Liverpool do have “significant interest” in signing Jude Bellingham, according to a reliable source – but their prospects of a deal look unlikely until at least summer 2023.
After making a breakthrough at a young age with Birmingham City, Bellingham has been honing his craft with Borussia Dortmund. He has coped admirably with the step up to top-flight football, making 46 appearances last season. His form earned him a place in England’s Euro 2020 squad, where he became the youngest ever player to feature in the competition – although his record was broken within a week.
Reports on Tuesday claimed Reds boss Jurgen Klopp is a huge admirer of Bellingham and wants to bring him to Anfield. Furthermore, a report stated the Reds had checked on his progress after starting alongside Jordan Henderson for England on Sunday.
In addition, Wednesday’s Paper Talk claims Liverpool were readily exploring the possibility of a deal for teenage star. Via the Daily Star, they claim Liverpool would be willing to spend up to £80m to lure the midfielder to Anfield.
And while transfer links from the tabloid can often be taken with a pinch of salt, the rumours now appear to have gathered pace. That’s after a report in The Times, written by Merseyside journalist Paul Joyce, confirms Liverpool’s interest.
The article claims that while his sale looks unlikely in summer 2022, the Reds do have, according to Joyce and Matt Lawton, “significant interest” in the midfielder.
They, along with Manchester City and Manchester United, would all make serious moves to sign him were Dortmund to sell.
However, it states that Bellingham is unlikely to leave the Westfalenstadion any time soon.
Having sold Jadon Sancho this summer for £73m, BVB look likely to cash in on Erling Haaland in 2022. The powerful Norwegian striker has an exit clause which kicks in allowing him to leave for around £67m.
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Any deal, however, would contain significant bonuses to his agent Mino Raiola.
And with the deal due to go through in summer 2022, that would leave Dortmund in a strong position with Bellingham. Indeed, it’s stated his sale is likely to be deferred until summer 2023 at the earliest.
Either way, Dortmund can expect to make another significant profit on a player. Bellingham cost them £25m when signing from Birmingham City in summer 2020 and has made a big impact in Germany.
Pundit backs Liverpool chase for Bellingham
The prospect of Bellingham moving to Liverpool is certainly a deal that would excite many a Reds fan.
And former Premier League striker Noel Whelan insists Liverpool would be getting the real deal if they signed him.
“Wow, he would be an amazing signing,” Whelan told Football Insider.
“I thought he was excellent against Andorra. I’m always excited to watch him. He ticks every single box as a midfielder.
“He has good stature, a good engine, a great passing range and vision. I love the little drag backs and nutmegs. He is just technically very gifted. The complete midfield player.
“I’m sure it’s not just Liverpool keeping an eye on him because he is a really, really exciting prospect. A lot of the top clubs in Europe will be interested.”