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Chelsea might well have agreed personal terms with Erling Haaland over a blockbuster summer transfer – but Borussia Dortmund will not be letting him go without a fight.
The Bundesliga heavyweights are desperate to keep their star forward for at least another season, having watched him score 57 goals across his first 59 games for the club.
The 20-year-old, who grew up watching Leeds and Manchester City, joined Dortmund for around £20m from Red Bull Salzburg back in 2019, and is said to be available on a cut-price deal next summer.
Despite that, Chelsea look keen to jump the queue and get their man before the inevitable free-for-all at the end of the season, and are said to be making progress.
Ian McGarry of The Transfer Window Podcast has reported that Haaland has struck a deal with Thomas Tuchel's side, and all that remains is agreeing a fee.
Dortmund could look for an amount of around £150m for the Norway international, but that could be reduced should Chelsea offer one or several of their own stars as part of the switch.
While insisting that Haaland would stay, Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc recently confirmed that Jadon Sancho would be free to leave if the right bid was made.
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"We already had a gentlemen's agreement with Jadon last year that he can switch under certain conditions," Zorc told ARD.
"He's been with us for a couple of years. However, this agreement does not exist with Erling."
While that agreement isn't in place, Chelsea will not be put off by the need to spend a club record fee, with Roman Abramovich ready to back Champions League winning boss Tuchel.
The former PSG and Dortmund boss said of his summer plans before their success in Porto: "I have opinions about what we can add to the group to get better.
"This is my job and I will give my opinion and I am asked my opinion and we will do this and sometimes opinions change. This is also a process and I have my ideas of course.
"I have ideas of certain profiles. This is not about me wishing for this player A and B and if they don’t come I will get angry. This was never like this in my whole career. This will not be like this.
"I totally understand there are issues to solve with the agents, the player, the interests of a club. It is not only about me and my wishes.
"I talk with the club and give my opinion and we share this with the scouting and of course I’m involved and I should be involved and I have absolutely the feeling that I am involved."
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