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What Signing Erling Haaland Would Mean for Manchester City?

Blues Rumoured to be Close to Norwegian’s Signature

Manchester City v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

The race to join the European elite and become one of the best clubs, if not the best in Europe, is on for Manchester City. One of the ways to achieve the goal will be to get the best players playing for the club. This has been the focus for the last decade plus.

The list of legends is growing just at the trophy cabinet is getting filled up. In the true fashion of a top club looking to do big things and even bigger things in the future, the club’s hierarchy is looking at recruiting the best talents in the game.

Despite spending significant amounts to build the team, City had not made a blockbuster £80 million plus signing until the acquisition of Jack Grealish last summer. And now it does seem it is time to raise the game.

Contrary to many people’s expectation City have enjoyed remarkable success on the pitch this season, despite playing without a striker. When the Harry Kane deal fell through last summer, many feared for the worst.

It seemed like the team wuld suffer as a result of the lack of a proper number 9. Sergio Aguero had just left after an accomplished career at the Etihad Stadium and it was time to fill the gaping hole left behind.

City fans had been through this before with the exit of Vincent Kompany. The failure to replace him immediately cost City the Premier League title the next season. Was history about to repeat itself?

But just as the club’s chairman, Khaldoon Al Mubarak, promised in an interview after Aguero’s departure, the club has been searching relentlessly for an ideal replacement for the Argentine.

After failing in the bid to bring in Harry Kane from Tottenham, the club’s hierarchy have moved on to other targets. The executives are not looking for just any player; they are looking for something special.

No one fits the bill more than Erling Braut Haaland right now. It’s understandable then that City are all in, trying to secure their number one target.

No one knows at this point if the deal is going to be made. Or it will fall through like some have done in the past. Recent reports, however, suggest that City are in a good position to get their man.

In the likely scenario that City do get Haaland, what are the possibilities for the club moving forward?

For all the noise that has been made about the Norwegian wonderkid, suffice to say that he is the real deal.

His numbers tell the story. And it’s an amazing story. He just knows how to put the ball in the back of the net, a rare quality for most players.

Even more important, he does tick all the boxes for City.

He is the right player to add to the squad at the right time. His qualities make him a game changer that could make the difference at City.

Yes, the club has been quite successful in recent years both on and off the pitch, winning the Premier League several times alongside several other trophies.

But Haaland’s importance will be seen in the biggest quest for City right now, which is European domination. The Champions League is the last frontier to conquer for the Cityzens.

A special target man in front of a talented and well-drilled group of players will literally complete the puzzle for Manchester City.

Pep Guardiola has built an amazing team at Etihad Stadium. But if there is one glaring gap in the team, especially after the departure of Sergio Aguero, it is the lack of a top-class striker leading the lines upfront.

No one will fill the space better than Erling Haaland at the moment. That explains why City want to get him at all costs. Even if it means also burying the hatchet and dealing with his agent Mino Raiola who has had a frosty relationship with the City executives from their days in Barcelona.

The second reason getting Haaland will be so important for City is that his signing will make a statement.

City have been in and around the table among the "big boys" of the European game since the takeover by the Abu Dhabi group. But it’s about time to take a seat on the table and even play a leadership role.

With the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona competing for the 21-year-old’s signature, successfully signing Haaland will set a new precedent. It will mean that we can go head-to-head with the biggest European heavyweights and beat them in the transfer market.

That will set a new narrative as City’s style of doing business in the transfer market has usually been that the club withdraws from signing any player whenever there is a bidding war.

Haaland choosing to go to City instead of Real Madrid or Barcelona will also be important. It establishes the Etihad Stadium as a place the biggest names in the game now want to go to, not just to the Santiago Bernabeu or Camp Nou.

That’s huge.

It will signify the coming of age of the club. Once made fun of, but now sitting at the table with the heavyweights. That mental shift will also provide a psychological boost that will get us closer to European glory.