Jude Bellingham: The Future Of Liverpool's Midfield?
Jude Bellingham is hot property amongst Europe’s elite clubs with pretty much
every top side being linked with him ahead of a huge transfer next summer. But
why is the 19 year old so highly sought after? Lets take a look at Bellingham’s
career so far, and where he could potentially be heading to in the next summer
Back to the start...
Jude Bellingham was born in Stourbridge back in June 2003 & remained local to
the area all throughout his youth career. At 8 years old, Bellingham signed for his
boyhood club Birmingham City in the under 8’s team. Bellingham’s development
was so impressive, that he found himself playing under 18’s football at the age of
After further progression in Birmingham City’s academy, he was then
playing under 23 football whilst he was 15 years of age. Even from a very young
age, Bellingham was playing way above his age which was a big sign of things to
come. Whilst still attending secondary school, Bellingham was training with the
first team squad & often joined them on match days.
Bellingham was offered a two year scholarship in 2019 & went away to Portugal
with the first team for a pre season camp. Shortly after the season had begun,
Bellingham made his professional debut for Birmingham City against Portsmouth
in the EFL Cup which made him Birmingham City’s youngest ever first team player
at 16 years old. Bellingham made his home debut for the club coming on from the
bench after just half an hour. Birmingham City came back from a goal down to win
the game...but who scored the winning goal? You guessed it...Jude Bellingham.
This goal made even more history for the 16 year old as it made him Birmingham
City’s youngest ever goal scorer at 16 years old & 63 days.
Bellingham became a first team regular for Birmingham City whilst he was still 16
years old. The youngster went onto make 44 appearances for the blues scoring 4
goals & assisting twice. His incredible performances from central midfield of
course caught the attention of many top clubs around Europe, and Bellingham had
a big decision to make...
The Big Transfer
After an incredible debut season in professional football, Jude Bellingham started
to raise eyebrows across Europe. Manchester United & Borussia Dortmund were
the two front runners to landing the signing, but Bellingham rejected Manchester
United in favour of signing for The Black & Yellows.
Bellingham spoke out on his decision to not join Manchester United & said...
“The way that Dortmund integrate youth players to the first team is next level.
There is no club in Europe that does it like them. Manchester United have a great
squad, and my decision had nothing to do with money. I was just so happy with
the interest from Dortmund that they became my first choice. It wasn’t a case of
this club over this club, it was just Dortmund. That’s it.”
The transfer fee is reported to be around £25,000,000 made Bellingham the most
expensive 17 year old in football history. It was a huge risk for Dortmund signing a
teenager for that price on the back of his break out season. But big risks can often
end with big rewards, and that’s exactly how it has worked out for Borussia
Dortmund yet again.
Life At Dortmund
Following the pattern from his time at Birmingham City’s academy, Bellingham has
shown incredible maturity whilst playing for Borussia Dortmund. He is an integral
part to their team at just 19 years old.
2020/21 was Bellingham’s debut season at Borussia Dortmund & he went onto
make 46 appearances from central midfield whilst both scoring & assisting 4
times. His debut came in Dortmund’s first game of the season against MSV
Duisberg in the DFB-Pokal. Dortmund won 5-0 on the night & of course yet again,
Jude Bellingham scored on his debut becoming the youngest ever goal scorer in
The records didn’t stop there however...Borussia Dortmund faced
Lazio in the Champions League & Bellingham became the youngest ever English
player to start in a Champions League match. After a fantastic debut season in the
Bundesliga, Bellingham finished runner up to Spanish wonder kid Pedri in the
Kopa Trophy which is awarded to the best Under 21 player in Europe. Bellingham
started in the DFB-Pokal final against RB Leipzig where Dortmund went onto win
4-1, which was Bellingham’s first major trophy of his football career.
The following season, Bellingham was even better. Directly involved in 20 goals
from central midfield, it’s clear to see why Europe’s biggest clubs are chasing him
once again. He scored 6 times, whilst registering 14 assists across all
competitons. Primarily used as a central midfielder, but Bellingham also
showcased his versatility whilst occasionally being deployed at defensive midfield,
left midfield & right midfield.
His unpredictability is for me what separates him from other midfielders. He likes
to start centrally & drift into wider positions whilst in possession of the ball to
create openings. When you look at how Harvey Elliott is being used at Liverpool in
that right central midfield spot, it is very simple to understand how Bellingham
would fit into this Liverpool system. He is an exceptional dribbler of the ball & can
manoeuvrer his way out of the tightest of situations. He likes to make late runs to
join the attack which is something I believe Liverpool lack right now. Liverpool
don’t really have any midfielders who pose a threat in front of goal, and can
consistently provide goals & assists. I believe that this is so important because
Liverpool have been reliant on their attackers to get all of the goals, whilst relying
on the full backs for assists. For Liverpool to sign a midfielder that could also help
on this front, would be nothing but a huge boost for the reds.
The Next Move...
So where will Jude sign for next? Well the general consensus is that it will be a
battle between Real Madrid & Liverpool to land the signature. If it comes down to
who needs him the most, I think Liverpool will be more eager to land him as they
already missed out on Aurelien Tchouameni in the summer to Real Madrid. It was
widely reported that Liverpool wanted either Tchouameni or Bellingham to boost
their midfield for years & years to come. However, Tchouameni opted to sign for the European Champions, whilst Dortmund refused to let Erling Haaland & Jude
Bellingham leave the club in the same summer transfer window.
Real Madrid already have fantastic young midfielders in abundance with Tchouameni adding to Eduardo Camavinga & Federico Valverde. Whereas Liverpool will be desperate to
sign the 19 year old as James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain & Naby Keita are
all potentially set to leave the club in the summer. Thiago Alcantara, as good as he
is, is very injury prone & captain Jordan Henderson has certainly seen better days.
A huge midfield revamp is surely among Liverpool FC in the near future, and what
better way to kick it off with landing one of Europe’s best young players right now
in Jude Bellingham.
According to highly reliable journalist Mike McGrath, Liverpool are currently
leading the race to sign Jude Bellingham next summer. Of course anything can
change & Liverpool will certainly need to ensure that they are challenging again
this season to land such a big signing, but it is positive news for Liverpool fans
regarding Jude Bellingham as we speak.
The transfer itself would be a huge statement from the club as Liverpool don’t
usually spend that kind of money. For a transfer that would be crucial for the club,
it’s time to see if the owners are willing to splash the cash on a midfielder that
would be at the heart of Liverpool’s midfield for easily the next decade.