While it might seem odd to see FC Barcelona talking about spending money given their publicly visible financial situation, the Catalan giants were never intent on settling for mediocrity. The arrival of Xavi and a busy January transfer window seen the team shaped more in the image of the former Al Sadd coach. The arrival of pacey players like Ferran Torres and Adama Traore has added a new dimension to what looked like a one-paced, dour Barca attack.
In the summer, though, the hope is that they can find the funds to capture generational talent Erling Haaland. The Norwegian is almost certain to depart Borussia Dortmund, with the Schwarzgelben doing little to convince him to stick around. A deflated title challenge, a meek DFB Pokal exit, and a likely impending exit in the Europa League in the next rounds leaves very little to hang on to.
Add in the fact that BVB have suffered financially more than others due to the pandemic and the massive crowd they missed out on, and an exit for the Norwegian is almost impossible to stop. Dortmund, though, might need to find another suitor if Barcelona cannot get the deal done.
The financial situation will need to be adjusted ahead of the summer, with Haaland expected to see teams bidding on his release fee. The challenge for the team, then, comes down to making sure they can move on enough player salaries and raise enough funds to make a competitive offer for Haaland.
If they cannot make the deal for the Norway international, though, they might look to another player with links to BVB. One who is more attainable, and already has shown proven success in La Liga.
Who could FC Barcelona target if they cannot sign Haaland?
The name being most heavily linked with a move to Barcelona after Haaland is Alexander Isak. The Swedish striker is currently playing for Real Sociedad, and has shown on more than a few occasions just how supremely talented he is. Having been part of a Sociedad team with a hugely impressive squad that has competed for a spot in European football, Sociedad would be unhappy to lose their star striker.
However, a chance to go to Barcelona and to compete for the UEFA Champions League would be nigh-impossible to ignore for Isak. The forward is expected to be available in the summer, though the fact his release fee sits at around €80m means that Barcelona will still need to find the funds from somewhere to do the deal.
Despite his immense talent, though, the summer of 2022 is more likely to have teams fixated on getting Haaland as opposed to coveting other options. That could offer Barcelona the ideal window of opportunity to swoop in and buy a player who has been making a real name for himself in Spain for the last three seasons.
Expect both players to be on the move in the summer, then, and one of the Scandinavian duo to arrive in Catalunya.