Zinedine Zidane has said he’s “tired” of having to deal with questions about Erling Haaland and other potential Real Madrid transfer targets after the striker’s father and agent met with the club on Thursday to discuss a possible deal.
Alf-Inge Haaland and Mino Raiola held talks with Barcelona on Thursday morning and Real Madrid later that same day in what sources told ESPN was a “friendly” two-hour meeting aimed at sounding out each party’s intentions for this summer.
“I get tired of saying the same thing, but everything that happens outside — and what’s more, he isn’t my player — I won’t say if it’s good or bad, I won’t get into it,” Zidane said when asked about Haaland at a news conference on Friday ahead of Madrid’s La Liga match with Eibar.
“What interests me is thinking about tomorrow’s game. I get tired of saying it, but if you or your colleagues ask me again about other players, I’ll say the same thing, so maybe save the question and ask a good football question.
“The rest, what will happen next year, I don’t know. Everyone does what he wants [at Real Madrid]. I don’t get involved. My job is preparing my players well for tomorrow’s game.”
Madrid have been over-reliant on Karim Benzema in terms of goalscoring this season, with no other player in their squad getting into double figures.
Haaland, 20, has scored 49 goals in 49 games for Borussia Dortmund since joining in January 2020.
A release clause in his contract does not come into effect until 2022, and ESPN has reported that Dortmund would accept €180 million this summer.
Sources told ESPN that Madrid felt they would have the edge over Barca if they decided to enter a bidding war for the Norway international, given their relationship with Dortmund and their healthier finances, although the club would still need to sell a number of players to finance any deal.
“No one has the blame here, not the national team,” Zidane said. “This is football. Unfortunately things happen, it’s happened a lot to us — and every team — this year… I think he was okay to go away with the national team. I think it was a normal process.
“We’re always in contact with the national team. Unfortunately the injury couldn’t be avoided… But when you look at all the injuries we’ve had, it’s true that it’s too many.”
Ramos had only just come back into the team after undergoing knee meniscus surgery in February.