Borussia Dortmund

Dortmund sporting director clarifies position on sale of Erling Haaland in 2021

Tom Gott
Erling Haaland will remain at Dortmund
Erling Haaland will remain at Dortmund / INA FASSBENDER/Getty Images

Borussia Dortmund chief Sebastian Kehl insists the German side were never genuinely concerned about losing star striker Erling Haaland this summer.

The Norway international had plenty of suitors, but only Chelsea were prepared to come anywhere close to Dortmund's £150m asking price. The Blues stopped at £130m and ended up turning to Romelu Lukaku, meaning Haaland is set to stay for at least one more season.

All the speculation clearly didn't impact Haaland, who bagged two goals and three assists in Dortmund's season opener against Eintracht Frankfurt, and after that game, Kehl was adamant that calmness was shared by those in charge at Signal Iduna Park.

"There were a lot of rumours, a lot of discussions, but internally we were always clear with Erling, with his father, with Mino Raiola," Kehl told Viaplay. "For that reason, we were always very calm.

"[Haaland]'s here, you can see him, he's very motivated and very engaged, and he wants to play a great season for Borussia Dortmund."

Haaland is now expected to stay at Dortmund until at least the summer of 2022, when his release clause of around £63m will become active and spark another Europe-wide scramble for his signature.

Haaland was later asked how he could stay motivated and focused with everything that has been going on around him, and the striker insisted playing in front of a full stadium for the first time in well over a year made it easy.

"Today, it was easy to be motivated," he said, pointing to the stands. "I had goosebumps when I went out on the pitch. It was amazing to play in front of fans today. It's free motivation, I've missed them a lot.

"It's a good feeling, I can't explain it. When I scored... it was amazing."

Team-mate Gio Reyna was also asked to describe Haaland in just one word, and after a lot of deliberation, settled on the term 'machine'.

"He does so much for the team, but most importantly, going forward for us, he's so important on the counter. Goals, assists, a team player... we're all really, really happy to have him and we're looking forward to creating more goals together."