Bayern Munich have officially made a U-turn on their approach to Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland.
The Bundesliga champions officially stepped out of the running to sign the prolific striker in March.
The Norway striker has been linked with the biggest names in European football including Bayern. However, the club made it clear they had no interest in Haaland while they have Robert Lewandowski under contract.
Haaland, 21, looked to be on the market at the start of the year.
The Bavarian side had questioned the rumours surrounding talk for the brilliant striker and said they already had the best centre forward in the world.
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, CEO of Bayern, told Bild: “I don’t know where the rumours come from. I can only say one thing: we have the world leading footballer in this position. Robert Lewandowski has a contract until 2023.”
Developments over the summer have meant that Dortmund have put the block on Haaland leaving this month.
However, Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has confirmed they would look at signing Haaland if he was available for transfer.
Salihamidzic appeared on German TV channel Sport 1 on Sunday where he said Bayern would appear like “amateurs” if they did not explore the option of signing the forward.
“He’s a top player, and I hear a great boy too. You look there, but he’s a Dortmund player. Sixty goals in 60 games. You have to look, otherwise we would be full amateurs,” Salihamidzic said.
Haaland’s hat-trick in Saturday’s 3-0 win over Wehen Wiesbaden in the DFB Pokal means he has scored 60 goals in 60 games for Dortmund since he joined them in January 2020.
Manchester United tried to land the former Molde star before Dortmund landed the player.
Ole Gunnar Solskajer even flew out to personally speak to his former Molde player, but a deal could not be orchestrated.
United were again linked with Haaland this summer and Solskjaer admitted “following” his compatriot.
Dortmund though put the “not for sale” sign up this summer, which will likely prompt a scramble for him in 2022.
“I have the clear expectation that Erling Haaland will play for us next year,” CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke told Sport Bild back in May. “And I don’t waste any thoughts on anything else.”
Man Utd ‘excited’
Next summer Haaland’s €75m buyout clause is believed to kick in.
Manchester United officials are said to be “excited” by the prospect of Chelsea also missing out on Haaland.
The prolific Norway international is wanted by both clubs. But Dortmund have dug their heels in and Chelsea have turned to Romelu Lukaku.
Eurosport’s Dean Jones told the Football Terrace podcast: “It hasn’t quite come through as far as Chelsea hoped it would by now, I think it would be fair to say.
“Borussia Dortmund will be closing the door at the end of the week because they need to focus on the new season. Erling Haaland knows that he has so many options open to him next summer.
“Man United, by the way, are becoming quite excited by all this. The fact that Haaland might still be on the market next summer.”
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