Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has decided to make life difficult for Manchester City, who are the frontrunners to sign Erling Haaland. Alejandro Alcazar informed via Sport that the Spaniard is ready to accelerate his approach towards securing the Norwegian's services.
The decision to up the ante comes after Los Blancos' embarrassing 4-0 defeat at the hands of Barcelona in the latest El Clasico on Sunday.
Both Manchester City and Real Madrid are capable of offering Haaland lofty wages but will have to persuade him quickly. The opportunity to sign him for his release clause runs out on April 30.
After the said date, the two European giants or any team for that matter will not be able to sign the striker for his €75 million release clause. Potential suitors will then have to oblige and hold talks with Borussia Dortmund, the Norwegian's current employer, to decide on a price tag.
The German club could well take advantage of the situation and keep their asking price higher than the player's release clause.
Earlier this month, the Daily Mail reported that Manchester City were willing to offer Haaland wages in excess of £500k-per-week. That figure would make the striker the highest-paid player in the Premier League, eclipsing the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Florentino Perez is also eager to sign Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain in the summer. Although he will be a free agent, Los Blancos will have to pay him an attractive salary. The Frenchman's move could make it difficult for Real Madrid to pursue a deal for Haaland in the same window.
There is also the question of whether the Borussia Dortmund striker would like to share the limelight with Mbappe.
Tough test awaits Real Madrid and Manchester City in the Champions League
Pep Guardiola's side suffered a major heartbreak last season when they were beaten in the Champions League final by Chelsea. Once again, they have been progressing positively towards European silverware and are among the favorites to lift the trophy this season.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid beat all the odds in a clash of titans contest between themselves and a star-studded PSG side. Karim Benzema scored a 17-minute hat-trick in the last 30 minutes of the second leg to help Los Blancos pull an unlikely comeback from 2-0 down on aggregate.
Diego Simeone's Atletico Madrid awaits Manchester City in the quarter-finals. It will be a particularly entertaining draw with two managers who play extremely different brands of football.
Guardiola's side love to play free-flowing possession-based football whereas the La Liga outfit are known for sitting back in a low block and attacking on the counter.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid fans will hope that it is revenge time for them as they play Chelsea in the quarter-finals this season. The Blues convincingly beat Los Blancos in last year's semi-final tie by an aggregate of 3-1.