This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Erling Haaland is one of the most coveted strikers in the world at the moment, and for good reason.
The Norwegian striker hasn’t been out of the headlines since netting nine goals in an U20 World Cup game, and he hasn’t stopped scoring yet.
However, it’s also caused a stir amongst the Leeds fanbase due to the fact that Haaland has an affinity with the Whites.
Of course, he is the son of former United midfielder Alf-Inge Haaland, therefore, he was born in Leeds and he has previously stated his ambition to win the league with the club.
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Phil Hay provided some news on Leeds’ previous interest in the striker and where they stand on the matter going forward.
The journalist was asked in his Q&A session with The Athletic if he thought Leeds could ever bring the striker in at Elland Road.
“The way he’s going with his goalscoring, someone is going to pay very big money for him. The Leeds link is very obvious but money talks.”
One fan picked up on the fact Haaland is already playing Champions League football and that he wouldn’t want to take a step down at this stage of his career. Hay responded:
“That’s probably true. And even staying where he is for a while, that move has done great things for him. Leeds did try to get him before he took the Red Bull offer. They couldn’t match it.”
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Hay’s update will sting.
To know that the Whites had spotted Haaland’s talents before he burst onto the scene must be heart-breaking, especially as he was practically in their grasp. A little extra on the wage bill and he may have proven to be one of their most inspired signings, particularly given his record this term.
The journalist says that Leeds couldn’t match Salzburg’s offer, but with him joining the Austrian outfit for a reported fee of €9m (£7.7m) it’s hard to say that Leeds couldn’t have afforded that deal, just that they thought it was too much of a risk.
If they’d have had more faith in Haaland’s abilities they would have been in a much stronger position right now as they’d have one of the best goalscorers in Europe at their disposal.
As it happens, they’re now struggling on the goals front with Patrick Bamford failing to find the net in nine matches.