Erling Haaland has scored 52 goals in his first season at Manchester City
Erling Haaland scored 52 goals in his first season at Manchester City AFP News

Reigning Premier League champions Manchester City are reportedly planning to put a contract extension offer on the table for star striker Erling Haaland as soon as possible. The move is reportedly aimed at fending off Spanish giants Real Madrid, who are said to be planning to find a way to tempt the Norwegian star into making the move.

The contract extension rumours are coming just over a year since Haaland joined Manchester City from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2022. However, the move comes as no surprise considering the incredible season that he had in his first year with the Sky Blues.

Haaland's phenomenal opening campaign

In the 2022/23 season, Manchester City famously won the treble, which comprises the Premier League title, the FA Cup and their maiden UEFA Champions League trophy. The Norwegian played a key role in many of the club's crucial victories which led to all the silverware.

In the process, Haaland also broke the Premier League Golden Boot record by logging 36 league goals in his first year with Pep Guardiola's side. His arrival clearly signalled a transition into the club's future, especially after the retirement of the club's record goalscorer, Sergio Aguero, who left for a short stint with FC Barcelona before being forced to retire due to health issues in 2021.

Haaland's current contract is not set to expire anytime soon

It needs to be pointed out that talks of a contract extension are coming up despite the fact that Haaland's current deal with Manchester City actually runs until 2027. However, the deal contains clauses which technically allow him to break free much earlier.

As early as the end of the current campaign, Haaland is reportedly available for a transfer fee worth somewhere between £150-170m, which is an amount that Real Madrid can easily afford should they find themselves in desperate need of a world class striker.

It is understood that Kylian Mbappe remains a priority for Real, but Paris Saint-Germain are not keen on letting the Frenchman go for less than £200 million, let alone on a free transfer. Mbappe has been flaking on the Real Madrid move for a number of seasons, and patience is running out. As such, they might turn their attention to Haaland.

However, according to the Daily Telegraph, City are ready to pull all the stops to prevent Los Blancos from getting their hands on their most valuable asset at the moment. They want to do this by offering a contract extension which keeps him with the club all the way until 2029.

This means that the Norwegian will be asked to commit the peak of his playing career with City.

Pep Guardiola warned Haaland about joining City

Despite having already proven his worth while still playing for German Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund, Haaland admitted that he received a warning from the Manchester City boss before he completed his transfer.

According to Haaland, he may have been a hotshot, but Guardiola will not tolerate any diva behaviour at City. At that time, Haaland was a sought after striker across Europe, with all of the top teams across the continent vying for his signature.

He left Dortmund after scoring 86 goals in 89 appearances, but Guardiola made it clear that he needed to put in the work just like the rest of his teammates at City. Haaland admitted to The Telegraph that Guardiola demands a lot from his players regardless of how good they already are.

Haaland shared: "When I spoke with him before I signed here he said 'I don't care what you do, do whatever you want. But when you have me on the (training) pitch you have to be focused. If not, I will smash you!'"

Real Madrid has remained mum on the transfer rumours

The January transfer window is coming up soon, and it is still unclear what Real Madrid are planning to do. One thing is clear, however, and it is that they are desperately in need of reinforcements on the defence.

Manager Carlo Ancelotti is spoiled for choice in the midfield with even the likes of Toni Kroos and Luka Modric being rested frequently this season. They have not made a marquee signing up front to replace Karim Benzema, but Jude Bellingham and Joselu have consistently been finding the back of the net even while Vinicius Junior was sidelined due to injury.

It remains to be seen if they will stay on the same path in their pursuit of Mbappe and Haaland or if they will eventually shift their strategy by the end of the season.