Jude Bellingham has dropped a major hint about why he would reject a summer move to Liverpool in favor of Manchester United. On Sunday evening, the 19-year-old attracted the limelight once more as England defeated Ukraine 2-0 in Euro 2024 qualification.
Bellingham earned his tenth consecutive international start at Wembley Stadium, playing 86 minutes as Gareth Southgate’s side maintained their unblemished record.
He is largely likely to leave Borussia Dortmund this summer, with Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, and Real Madrid all interested.
Yet, despite standing next to his childhood hero Steven Gerrard after the game, his comments may not auger well for Liverpool fans thinking he will join them at the end of the season.
In an interview with Channel 4, he stated that his top priority is to learn from world-class midfielders: “I believe I still have a lot to learn.
“As a midfielder, I want to be someone who can win games on both ends of the field.
“To control the ball in the middle as a six, an eight, making runs into the box, and a ten while also creating chances.
“I’ve always wanted to be able to do a little bit of everything. I believe I still have a lot to learn, but you have the best chance with the men in that [England] changing room and those at Dortmund.
“To be honest, I’m like a sponge right now, wanting to soak up everything I can about the game at any opportunity.”
This season, Bellingham has blossomed into one of Europe’s greatest midfielders, but he has been praised for the humble tone of his interview. He’s still eager to learn.
Jurgen Klopp’s aging midfield ranks, on the other hand, are a pale ghost of his old engine room.
Fabinho, Jordan Henderson, and Thiago have reached the end of their careers, while Naby Keita, James Milner, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are set to become free agents in July.
If learning from the best is an important component in Bellingham’s decision, Anfield no longer appears to be an appealing location.
Meanwhile, Manchester United has three outstanding midfielders in Casemiro, Christian Eriksen, and Bruno Fernandes.
Man City’s roster speaks for itself, but Real Madrid could face the same problem as Liverpool if Luka Modric and Toni Kroos leave in the coming months.
Erik ten Hag is set to sign another midfielder this summer, and United is said to be ready to compete for Bellingham’s services.
Nevertheless, Liverpool’s chances of matching Dortmund’s £110 million value are likely to be hampered by his desire to learn from the finest in the business. It is no longer something Klopp’s midfield can provide.