Manchester United’s faltering relationship with Paul Pogba may have dented their chances of signing Erling Braut Haaland, one respected pundit has claimed.
United were keen on signing strike starlet Haaland in January, offering him the chance to work with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer again after their time together at Molde.
However, they ultimately lost out to Borussia Dortmund, who snapped him up for a bargain €20m before seeing him score 11 goals in his first seven games.
With Haaland’s market value only set to skyrocket over the next few months, it appears United have missed a golden chance to sign one of the biggest prospects in world football.
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher, though, does not think missing out on Haaland was the worst news for United.
Writing for the Telegraph, the pundit cast doubt over the value of United working with another Mino Raiola client, amid a turbulent situation with Paul Pogba.
The French midfielder has been heavily linked with a departure from United, with agent Raiola getting embroiled in a very public row with the club.
Gary Neville was one of many to take a swipe at Raiola for the fallout, claiming he was “publicly trying to embarrass the club all the time”.
It is for this reason that Neville’s Sky Sports colleague Carragher believes opting against signing Haaland was a wise decision by the Red Devils hierarchy.
“Whoever signed Haaland from RB Salzburg knew they were not only getting an amazing young talent – they were also inviting the circus into town in the form of his representative, Mino Raiola,” said Carragher.
“United, like every club scouting the Norwegian teenager, had to weigh up the value of the player against the cost of the distracting influence of his high-profile advisor.
“No matter what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said to Haaland to try to convince him to move to Old Trafford, it is a reasonable assumption the advice from Raiola mattered more to the player.
“It does not strike me Raiola would have been United’s ally given recent history.
“I cannot help but think if Haaland was represented by someone else, he might be at Old Trafford.
“Just because Haaland looks like he is the bargain of the century for Dortmund, it does not mean the cost of signing him was a price worth paying for United.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has claimed he has no regrets over United’s failure to pair him up with his former pupil again, saying: “I normally never comment but since I have had Erling I’m delighted for him.
“He’s a top boy I want the best for and he’s started fantastically for Dortmund. For Norway it’s brilliant we have a striker who can score again.”