(CNN)The contention to unafraid Erling Haaland's signature has been 1 of the astir hotly-contested transportation sagas successful caller representation -- and it would look to inactive beryllium yet reaching its conclusion.
Multiple UK media outlets person reported that Manchester City volition apt denote successful the coming week that it has agreed a woody with Borussia Dortmund for the striker's services.
Haaland's brute force, blistering gait and devastating finishing quality person made him 1 of the astir sought-after players successful the world, meaning Dortmund has been resigned to losing its prima subordinate ever since signing him successful 2020.
While galore clubs would understandably beryllium frustrated astatine perpetually losing retired to those higher successful the pecking order, the inevitably of the transfers marque them overmuch easier to manage, Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke says.
"That's the lone mode for america due to the fact that erstwhile a subordinate performs precise well, we person to combat against the big, big, large clubs with the oligarchs and the Arabian states astatine their back," Watzke tells CNN Senior Sport Analyst Darren Lewis.
"And this combat we cannot win, but we tin triumph a combat implicit an 18-year-old player, similar Jude Bellingham, due to the fact that this subordinate loves to play astatine Borussia Dortmund due to the fact that we person ever 80,000 spectators, it's a precise bully ambiance and the nine knows however to negociate young players.
"That's our mode and, okay, we person a bully section who are scouting young players each day, but it's besides precise important if you person the subordinate here, you indispensable make him and I deliberation that works ... astir of the time, it works."
Watzke is nether nary illusions astir wherever Dortmund stands successful the hierarchy of modern football.
The nine has nurtured -- and past sold -- galore of Europe's biggest and astir costly stars of caller years; Robert Lewandowski, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Jadon Sancho, Mario Götze, Mats Hummels, Ousmane Dembélé and Christian Pulisic are among the players to person worn the celebrated achromatic and yellowish shirts.
While Watzke understands that a precocious subordinate turnover is portion of the business, determination is inactive a quality being down a transportation fee, and connected definite occasions, waving goodbye is harder than others.
"Sometimes, it's a small spot much emotional," Watzke admits. "It was precise affectional for maine erstwhile Mats Hummels told maine successful 2016 that helium volition permission the nine aft I deliberation 7 oregon 8 years due to the fact that it was a agelong play and we had a precise peculiar relationship.
"But sometimes, players are astatine Borussia Dortmund for one, two, 3 years, and successful this period, it's not truthful heavy with the emotions and it's mean successful shot that players come, players spell and if they privation to go, OK.
"Sometimes, it's a bully deal; sometimes, it's not truthful good. When we sold Ousmane Dembélé to Barcelona aft a abbreviated period, it was a precise bully deal. When Robert Lewandowski near america without transportation fee, it was not a bully deal, but that's football."
It would look present that Haaland is adjacent up to permission the club.
The 21-year-old has scored a singular 85 goals successful 88 games since joining from RB Salzburg successful 2020, breaking galore Bundesliga and Champions League records on the way.
Manchester City looks acceptable to conscionable Haaland's reported merchandise clause of €75 cardinal ($79 million) -- a veritable bargain fixed his talents and the existent transportation interest clime -- and bushed a fig of Europe's biggest clubs to his signature, including Real Madrid, Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain.
On the time of CNN's interrogation with Watzke (April 26), the Dortmund CEO admitted helium didn't cognize whether Haaland would permission during the European summertime transportation window. What helium did cognize for sure, however, was if Haaland did leave, Dortmund volition proceed competing arsenic it ever has done.
"It's a determination for Erling," Watzke said. "Erling, you know, has an exit clause and helium indispensable determine if we wants to instrumentality this exit clause oregon not and helium has clip to springiness america his decision. When the clip is ready, helium volition bash it.
"But we [Dortmund] person played shot for 113 years, and for 111 years, we played without Erling Haaland. We had Robert Lewandowski and past helium near america successful 2014, but we played shot successful '15, '16, '17 until now.
"Then adjacent came Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and past Erling Haaland and you tin beryllium definite if Erling takes a determination to permission us, we volition find the adjacent [player] 100% percent."