DORTMUND, Germany (AP) — Borussia Dortmund has signed 19-year-old forward Erling Braut Haaland from Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg, beating out a number of clubs interested in the Norwegian teeanager.
The Bundesliga club announced Sunday that the tall striker, who impressed with eight goals in six Champions League games for Salzburg this season, signed a contract through June 2024.
“Despite many offers from absolute top clubs around Europe, Erling Haaland opted for the sporting challenge of Dortmund and the opportunities that we offer him," Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke said. "Our persistence paid off.”
Haaland scored 16 goals and set up six more in 14 league matches for Salzburg. He spent some days in Dortmund last week to get an impression of the club amid offers from other clubs. Bundesliga rival Leipzig was also interested in signing the striker, while Manchester United had been linked with a January move for him as well.
“I had the feeling that I definitely wanted to transfer to this club, take this path and play in the incredible atmosphere that Dortmund provides in front of more than 80,000 spectators. I literally cannot wait to get started,” Haaland was quoted as saying.
Haaland will join his new teammates on Jan. 3 before traveling with the squad the next day for its winter training camp in Marbella, Spain.
Kicker magazine reported that Dortmund made use of a clause in Haaland’s contract with Salzburg and paid 20 million euros ($22.4 million) for his transfer.
Dortmund is fourth in the Bundesliga and was looking for support for Spanish striker Paco Alcácer.