Liverpool boss Jürgen Klopp has been a fan of Borussia Dortmund ace Jude Bellingham for quite some time and it would appear that this remains the case despite him having recently upset his team-mates.
The 18-year-old England international had a dressing room bust-up with Nico Schulz last month and since then he’s clashed with Axel Witsel. Reports in Germany suggest that his team-mates are tired of his behaviour with Sport1 reporter Patrick Berger writing that Bellingham has created a divide in the dressing room with his antics.
However, have these claims put off Jürgen Klopp from making an ambitious attempt to land him? Putting finances (his valuation) and other related conditions to one side (Salah and Mane), it was interesting to hear about a conversation held between club executives and a major sponsor at Anfield shortly after full-time yesterday …
During an informal post-match get together, it is claimed that club officials were asked by one of the club’s major marketing partners if Liverpool had an interest in Bellingham. We are choosing not to say too much about those involved, including the company, to protect the source who has been known to us for decades. Apparently the conversation came around in relation to production of official club merchandise (clothing). Such conversations about potential ‘big name’ links / signings are held all the time so this wasn’t out of the ordinary and of course, club officials are not going to reveal who is and who isn’t considered a transfer target to all and sundry. However, some officials and partners are closer than others and some partners are considered extremely more important than others.
In short, the message was that Liverpool were looking at Bellingham as a summer transfer target but that many variables may prevent it from happening. For a start, there have been reports that Bellingham wants to stay in Germany for another year and that his transfer valuation is out of reach for what Klopp (not the club’s senior management) would be willing to pay. An attempt to sign him would also be conditional as to what happens to other key Liverpool players. For example, if Salah was to indicate his intentions to leave the club, a bid becomes far more likely.
However, despite the negatives, one of the player’s agents Philip Degen, who played for Liverpool between 2008-2011, and who now works for SBE Management, has allegedly claimed that ‘in person, off the record and informal conversations’ will be held between Liverpool and Bellingham’s father at some point this month. These conversations are not being labelled as ‘transfer talks’. Degen is close to Bellingham’s father and both men were quoted at the conversation that we are privy to. It was also stated that Klopp hasn’t been put off by Bellingham’s dressing-room problems despite the media recently suggesting such.
Ifs, buts and maybe are a huge part of transfer rumours and whether things ever actually materialise. While we are not claiming we will step up for Bellingham, we think that little snippets of information like this are worth mentioning to our members as it shows insights and gives us a little idea of what the boss may be thinking. Bellingham looks too costly as things stand, but if there is a big exit in the summer, we can see us launching an offensive to sign him.