Borussia Dortmund director Michael Zorc has dismissed the ongoing transfer rumours surrounding Real Madrid-linked striker Erling Haaland.
Haaland has solidified his reputation as one of the most deadly strikers in European football since joining Dortmund from Red Bull Salzburg for £18 million ($24m) in the January transfer window.
The 20-year-old has hit a staggering 33 goals in his first 31 outings for BVB across all competitions, with his latest double coming in a 3-0 home win over Club Brugge in the Champions League.
The Norwegian frontman is attracting plenty of high profile admirers after his bright start to life at Westfalenstadion, and is already being tipped to move onto an even bigger club, despite being tied to Dortmund through to 2024.
Real Madrid have been among those credited with an interest in Haaland, who reportedly has a €75 million (£67m/$89m) release clause in his current contract, which will become active in 2022.
However, Zorc is paying no attention to the speculation surrounding the ex-Salzburg star's future, as he told a press conference ahead of BVB's Bundesliga clash against Koln on Saturday: "We plan for the long term with Erling. [Rumours] do not have to be dealt with at all.
"I will see him with us for a long time."
Asked if it is important to carefully manage the weight of expectation on Haaland's shoulders at this stage of his career, the Dortmund chief responded: "You don't have to ground him at all.
"He exudes such a positive dynamic. Why should we slow it down now?
"He is leading the way, that is very good for us. I do not believe in artificially slowing positive developments."
Haaland will likely return to Lucien Favre's starting XI when Koln arrive at Westfalenstadion this weekend, with Dortmund aiming to keep the pressure on Bundesliga leaders Bayern with only a point separating the two sides.
BVB will then start preparing for another European encounter against Lazio on December 2. Favre's men will book their place in the Champions League knockout stages if they see off the Italian giants on home turf, having already picked up nine points out of a possible 12 in Group F.