Liverpool’s task of signing Jude Bellingham may have become all the more challenging with it having emerged that Borussia Dortmund will use Benfica’s Enzo Fernández sale as a ‘benchmark’ in any negotiations for their star midfielder, as Christian Falk exclusively revealed to CaughtOffside in his latest column.
The Englishman’s contract isn’t set to expire until 2025, which should give the German outfit all the flexibility they need to secure a potentially record-breaking fee for the midfielder’s services this summer.
“We’ve mentioned already that in March there should be talks around Jude Bellingham,” the German journalist wrote.
“All sides were keeping a close eye on the deal for Enzo Fernández; certainly, Dortmund now feel they have a suitable benchmark for Bellingham thanks to the Chelsea transfer.
“Now they’re saying he won’t be cheaper. So Liverpool now know what they have to bring to the table – it shouldn’t be less than the transfer fee for Fernández.”
Regardless, the Merseysiders will not, at the moment, be swayed away from their course given Jurgen Klopp’s clear admiration for the 19-year-old.
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How much of the Reds’ warchest will be required to fund such a move remains a little unclear amid the uncertainty reigning behind the scenes over a potential takeover, not to mention with top four football looking far from a guarantee whilst the club continue to be mired in the midtable.
Klopp’s men have found solutions when previously faced with the prospect of no top European football in the following campaign, with the likes of Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams proving unlikely heroes, dragging the club kicking and screaming back into the promised land.
That may be a bigger ask this year whilst the side continues to rely on an injury-prone midfield amid defensive concerns and a lack of lethality up front.