It is no secret that Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland is this year's hot property. Football fans are all hot and bothered after it was revealed that a virtual "El Clasico" is currently taking place in the battle for the Norwegian's signature.
Multiple media outlets have reported that Haaland's agent Mino Raiola and his father, Alf-Inge Haaland, have flown to Spain to attend discussions about the player's future.
The pair reportedly landed in Catalunya on Thursday and met with new FC Barcelona president Joan Laporta. The club has been very vocal about their intention to sign Haaland as part of their scheme to rebuild the team after a tumultuous era at the tail end of Josep Maria Bartomeu's reign.
Laporta also wants to retain Argentine superstar Lionel Messi, and with Antoine Griezmann also in the roster as well as Ansu Fati, Martin Braithwaite and Ousmane Dembele, there will likely be a lot of movement before they can accommodate and even afford Haaland.
Haaland is reportedly a priority for Laporta, but can Barcelona really compete with other suitors? Following the meeting with the Blaugrana, Raiola and Haaland's father hopped over to the Spanish capital via a private jet. The pair met with representatives of Real Madrid, making it clear that Haaland is still open to taking offers.
Barcelona is under a lot of financial strain, but they are confident that they can put together a good offer. Real Madrid is in a better financial position, but they are spending a lot on the renovation of the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
Both teams also have to weigh their offer with the fact that their respective captains, Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos, are up for contract renewals. Neither team can offer a large enough sum that will offend their captains who are likely being offered pay cuts.
Haaland will reportedly set back any interested party by 180 million euros, which is no small change. While the two Spanish clubs are frontrunners, English sides Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United are also interested. Even Italian giants Juventus are being thrown in the mix.
It will be an interesting summer transfer window, and it remains to be seen which club will succeed. Dortmund meanwhile, has vowed to make it difficult for any interested suitors.