Erling Haaland’s heavily-rumoured switch to Manchester City has been thrown into doubt after City boss Pep Guardiola said the Premier League club signing a striker this summer would be “impossible”.
Haaland, who is now 2/1 to join City before the end of the summer transfer window, was as short as 11/8 in the last 48 hours.
With record-goalscorer Sergio Aguero leaving at the end of the season, Manchester City have been linked with the 20-year-old Borussia Dortmund forward, with the Bundesliga club likely to command a transfer fee well in excess of £100 million.
“Listen, with these prices we are not going to sign any striker,” said Guardiola.
“We are not going to sign any striker, it’s impossible – we cannot afford it. It’s impossible. That’s not going to happen, no.
“All the clubs struggle financially and we are not an exception. We have Gabriel (Jesus) and Ferran (Torres), who played incredible in this position this season.”
Odds correct at 16:30 BST 02/04/21
Haaland has netted 77 goals in 71 club games in the last two seasons and has averaged a goal every 52.5 minutes in the Champions League this campaign.
City are still the bookies favourite destination for the Norway international should he choose to move in the summer window, although Guardiola’s bombshell in his Friday press conference has seen Haaland’s odds drift significantly.
Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Kylian Mbappe of Paris St Germain have also been rumoured as potential replacements for Aguero but again would command a substantial price.
“We have young players in the academy and we have played many times with a false nine,” added Guardiola.
“I don’t know what will happen. Maybe we are going to buy one but maybe maybe we are not going to buy any striker for the next season. Today there is more chance we are not going to buy any striker.”
We are committed in our support of responsible gambling. Recommended bets are advised to over-18s and we strongly encourage readers to wager only what they can afford to lose.
If you are concerned about your gambling, please call the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133, or visit begambleaware.org.