Can Haaland Be Chelsea’s Way Of Building New Identity?

Another football transfer window season is open. The Transfer window determines the future of many clubs. It is the arena where football clubs find replacements for injured players and ways to strengthen their squads. There are clubs, which function solely due to the fund acquired through the transfer markets. These clubs sprout young talents and sell them to big clubs. Borussia Dortmund is one such club, where scouts search for talents relentlessly. Two years back Erling Haaland, then only 18, was picked up from Reb Bull Salzburg for 20 million Euros. Now, Borussia Dortmund has priced him above 100 million Euros after two successful seasons, especially this season where he scored an enormous 41 goals, and he is only behind Robert Lewandoski in terms of the number of goals.

Chelsea FC, for the first time after over a decade without big transfers, is reportedly eyeing Haaland. It is something to watch out for. Such a transfer looks highly unlikely as Borussia Dortmund is asking a price only a few clubs can offer. Apart from that, Mino Riola, Haaland’s agent, is not a person many clubs would want to be associated with.

Erling Haaland
Image Credit: Football Espana

His strategy as a football agent is very different from others. When top clubs acquire a young talent like Haaland they would like to keep the prized possession at their club for a long period, however, Mino Riola earns his fortunes by constantly shifting his players from one club to another. While doing this or by threatening to do this, he gains a foothold over the club and makes the club shift positions and transfers according to his and his player’s wish. This can affect the morale of the dressing room, which may in turn interfere with the playing style and impact the quality on the pitch.

Coming back to Chelsea, they took Champions League by surprise. No one saw them coming and no one predicted their victory. Thomas Tuchel as a tactician was very comfortable in dictating the terms of play in the club mainly because he had no superstars to deal with, unlike his former club PSG, where he had Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, who did not fully give in to his demands. However, the club is in dire need of a goalscorer, but Haaland and his agent would be tough to deal with. Now, the board and manager are adamant that they build a new identity for Chelsea FC regained by the Champions League victory after 9 long years. They always had the money to build, but not enough fuel to win it. But this time, they have got both.

Image Credit: CBS Sports

Erling Haaland is a perfect no 9 player. He can be very impactful with the opposition. He can even crush the defence on air. He is just what Tuchel needs right now. He drops deep to get the ball, but not as much as Timo Werner or his mate Havertz. However, in the final third he employs his techniques to find the net. Haaland happens to be a no 9 player in a world where tactics are not built based on a player standing on the final third of the pitch. Consider Manchester city, they depend mostly on their midfielders and it has shown great progress in building up the game as a team. But that doesn’t diminish the importance of a player like Halaand, who has the potential to rule the football arena, post Messi and Ronaldo, along with Kylian Mbappe, if things go according to plan for both.

But Tuchel demands a total devotion to his tactics. He needs the players to believe him totally to utilize the players’ potential to the fullest. His tactics demand high physicality and greater pressing. Can a player like Haaland, who became a star at 20, deliver this? It’s a question only time can answer.

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