Haaland, the missing piece in the jigsaw City needs

Manchester City has captured the ‘signing of the season’ with Erling Haaland agreeing to a £375,000-weekly salary.

The Norwegian striker scored 85 goals in 88 games for Borussia Dortmund, and many expect him to have a similar output when he joins City next season.

City was desperate to sign a top-class striker following the departure of Sergio Aguero at the end of last season.

At one stage, City targeted England captain Harry Kane. The deal fell through, as Tottenham wanted £150 million.

City looks set to retain the league crown, but not having a ‘proper No. 9’ may have cost it a shot at the Champions League.

“I read what Jamie Carragher had to say about the signing, and I have to agree.

“Haaland will not make much of a difference in the Premier League as City is already ‘there’ – getting 90++ points each season,” said Hanafi Mohammad, who supported the club before Sheikh Mansour Zayed Al Nahyan’s takeover.

“But Haaland will fill the gap City needs when it plays in the Champions League. He can be the difference in Europe.”

In this season’s Champions League semifinal against Real Madrid, City led 5-3 with two minutes to play, but conceded two quick-fire goals.

It then gave away a penalty in extra time to lose 6-5.

Another City fan, Mark Darren Savuriar, believes Haaland can help the club in Europe.

“I am so happy with the signing. We finally have a solid forward.

“With Haaland, (Julian) Alvarez and KDB (Kevin De Bruyne) on form, the Champions League is looking much more plausible,” said Savuriar, who plans to attend the final game of the season and witness the Premier League trophy presentation.

“We struggled to convert possessions to goals when we needed it the most. We have a good scoring record, but we missed too many.

“We did not have a forward that positioned himself correctly. Haaland is that missing piece.”

While City could not get what it wanted in Europe, it has been deadly since its Champions League elimination.

It scored five times against Newcastle and Wolves to open a three-point gap over Liverpool with two games left for both.

Those results eradicated Liverpool’s advantage as City now has a seven-goal advantage in terms of goal difference – plus 72 against plus 65.

City meets West Ham on Sunday (9pm), knowing a win would almost guarantee the league title for the fourth time in five years.

Liverpool is not in action this weekend, as it plays Chelsea in the FA Cup final tomorrow (11.45pm).

At the bottom of the table, Everton can pull away from the relegation zone when it hosts Brentford on Sunday (11.30pm).

Everton has 36 points from 35 games, two more than Burnley and Leeds. Burnley faces Tottenham on Sunday (7pm).

Leeds has played 36 games and looks doomed to relegation after losing its last three matches. It plays Brighton on Sunday (9pm).

FIXTURES (Malaysian time)

Tottenham vs Burnley (7pm)
Wolves vs Norwich (9pm)
West Ham vs Manchester City (9pm)
Watford vs Leicester (9pm)
Leeds vs Brighton (9pm)
Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace (9pm)
Everton vs Brentford (11.30pm)

Newcastle vs Arsenal (3am)

Southampton vs Liverpool (2.45am)