It is international week and Liverpool target Jude Bellingham put in another fine performance in England’s 2-1 victory against Italy. Reds fans were dealt a blow earlier this week after Athletic journalist David Ornstein described the club as being ‘increasingly unlikely’ to sign the Dortmund midfielder.
Ornstein’s article described a ‘reticence about entering a bidding war at the level expected’. This idea came under severe criticism from fans who pointed out that the club were always likely to face stiff competition for Bellingham’s signature.
On the latest episode of our Journo Insight Show, we asked goal.com’s Neil for his take on the latest twist in the Bellingham saga.
PAUL MITCHELL – LIVERPOOL’S POTENTIAL NEW SPORTING DIRECTOR
Neil said: “I think no decision has been made from Jude Bellingham. There’s no way that he’s picked his destination. We’d know now if he had done that.
“I think it comes down more to where Liverpool finishes the season. I think it is a significant factor. I think the Champions League is pretty important. I’m not saying it’s a deal breaker, but I think it’s a pretty important one.
“It would be a huge leap of faith from Jude Bellingham to drop out of the Champions League. I think it comes down to what he wants. I don’t think it’s going to be the highest bidder, wages, or agent fee. It’s going to be tough.
“As I understand it, I don’t think there’s been an acceptance on Liverpool’s part that there’s no chance. I think there’s still very much a live opportunity and one that they’re going to have to work very hard if they want to bring to fruition. I don’t know where he’s going to end up is the bottom line, isn’t it?!
“For it to get the stage where people believe it’s realistic, thinking it’s realistic, it appears to be realistic. To then go to the stance, ‘We never had a chance, did we? We never have a chance with Man City and Real Madrid in the race.’ I don’t believe that would wash. I think that would rightly lead to some criticism.”
One of the most coveted players in world football, described as being a ‘superstar’ by Roy Keeane, might actually cost a few bob… Who’dve thunk it?! The idea that the club are in any way surprised that the value of the transfer will be high is ridiculous. The mooted figures have always been over the £100million mark, so if the transfer is to happen, FSG will simply have to get their hands in their pockets. Many will scoff at that idea, but the club have broken the then-transfer record for both a defender and a goalkeeper in the past.
There have been ample opportunities for figures around the club to quash the rumours that Bellingham is interested in joining. Liverpool’s pitch has always had to be centred around tapping into something greater than financial rewards, or even guaranteeing trophies. Manchester City or Real Madrid would be able to offer both. If the Reds make a similarly limp exit from this transfer pursuit as they did in the Champions League, discontent will be brewing rapidly amongst the fanbase.
TO HEAR MORE FROM NEIL ON TOPICS SUCH AS PAUL MITCHELL, CLICK HERE
USE CODE ‘JOURNO’ TO GET CAPTAIN MEMBERSHIP FOR 99P FOR THE FIRST THREE MONTHS
IF YOU WANT MORE AMAZING, EXCLUSIVE REDMEN TV CONTENT, CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR REDMEN PLUS, THE ULTIMATE LIVERPOOL STREAMING SERVICE!