The Norwegian top scorer of Borussia Dortmund, Erling Haaland, is looking to raise his goalscorer in his favorite competition, the Champions League, when he comes to Turkey’s Besiktas, in the first round of the group stage, on Wednesday.
The deadly striker caught the eye last season, becoming the youngest player to reach the 20 goals barrier in the first continental competition in the fewest number of matches (14). This season, the 21-year-old scored 13 goals for his country and Dortmund, including Saturday’s double during the 4-3 victory over Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga.
Dortmund director and former international player Sebastian Kehl said: “It will be another emotional match, Turkish fans will strive for that, but we have the means to face Besiktas.” And the Champions League appeals to Haaland, as he scored 12 goals for Dortmund in 10 matches, after eight in 6 matches when he was with Austrian Red Bull Salzburg.
The most prominent European clubs are behind the young spearhead, such as Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United, Real Madrid, and Paris Saint-Germain. The giant Norwegian has a penalty clause in his contract of 75 million euros ($88 million) that can be activated in 2022, two years before the expiration of his contract in 2024, but Dortmund has repeatedly expressed his desire to keep him in his ranks, unless he finds himself forced to do so.
In turn, sports director Michael Zorc said: Our position is clear, I will not play the parrot every time. Dortmund was eliminated from the quarter-finals of the last edition against Manchester City. The yellow team seems likely to win the lead of a reasonable group, which also includes Ajax Amsterdam and Sporting Portugal.
But his defense conceded 9 goals in four league games, while his veteran central defender Mats Hummels returns after recovering from a knee injury. The German team must contain Belgian striker Michy Batshuayi, loaned from Chelsea, who scored nine goals in 14 games for Dortmund in 2017-2018, as the Belgian scored twice on Saturday during the 3-0 victory over Malatyaspor in the Turkish League.
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