Jude Bellingham’s alleged “nagging doubts” about joining Manchester United seem to have been proved right after his impressive performances in the Champions League.
Teenage midfielder Bellingham was arguably Dortmund’s best player in both legs as they fell to Manchester City at the quarter-final stage this week.
The fresh-faced England international scored in the second leg, as he should have done in the first but for some questionable refereeing, with a superb finish.
Bellingham looked lively in defence and attack, and many are tipping him to become the box-to-box midfielder England have craved since the days of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard.
The 17-year-old was strongly linked with a move to United before agreeing his switch to Dortmund from Championship side Birmingham last summer.
According to Eurosport, Bellingham was won over by the exciting project at Dortmund, who have a history of giving promising youngsters first team opportunities.
It is also claimed that he had real doubts about having those same chances if he moved to United.
And Donny van de Beek’s struggles to get into the starting line-up show he may well have been right, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer not keen to mix things up in midfield.
That’s not to say that the Red Devils don’t give youngsters a shot – look at Mason Greenwood’s game time this season despite not being in the richest vein of form for much of it.
But it seems that Bellingham was ready to go straight into a role that had been provided for him at Dortmund, not fight for one that may not exist at United.
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After Bellingham’s impressive performances in the Champions League, Daily Star columnist Paul Merson admitted that English sides must be regretting not pushing harder to land him.
“I didn’t realise he was that good to be honest,” Merson said in his latest column.
“There must be teams in England who are gutted they didn’t go for him. But they will have looked at him and thought: ‘He’s too young to play for us.’
“Now he’s bossing it in a Champions League quarter final so that just proves how wrong they were.
“Respect to him for a taking a chance and going abroad. The kid doesn’t look out of place against the best in the business.”
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