Even though the summer transfer window is months away, the race for the signing of Borussia Dortmund ace Jude Bellingham is intensifying, with Real Madrid and Liverpool emerging as the strongest contenders for his signing.
Earlier this week, it was reported that Liverpool had emerged as the frontrunners for the 19-year-old’s signing.
Now, MARCA is claiming that Liverpool’s presence in the transfer battle has left Real Madrid feeling that signing Bellingham in the summer of 2023 could be ‘complicated’.
Los Blancos are rebuilding their squad bit by bit, especially in midfield, having brought in Aurelien Tchouameni and Eduardo Camavinga in the last two summer windows. Bellingham is seen as the next piece of the puzzle as the club prepare for life after veterans Luka Modric and Toni Kroos.
But, Liverpool are pushing hard to sign the 19-year-old Englishman as well, as Jurgen Klopp looks to refresh his ageing midfield unit. They are also particularly intent on beating Real Madrid to his signing after facing defeat in pursuit of Tchouameni last summer.
As a result, Real Madrid are seeing the signing of Bellingham as ‘complicated’ at this point, which is made even trickier by the midfielder’s valuation.
Indeed, German sources are indicating that Dortmund will demand a sum of €150 million for Bellingham, who is contracted with the club until 2025 and has no release clause embedded in it.
And, Los Blancos have no intention of shelling out that much amount to sign the 19-year-old. While that does not mean that they are throwing in the towel already, Real Madrid do not wish to do anything ‘crazy’ to capture the signing of the former Birmingham City ace.
Bellingham has enjoyed a rapid rise to superstardom since joining Dortmund from Birmingham City in 2020. At just 19, he is one of the most coveted midfielders in Europe, with the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United also said to be keen, apart from Liverpool and Real Madrid.
With a major transfer battle set to take place for his signing, it will be interesting to see where the England star ends up next summer.
Ancelotti sets a target for Real Madrid to achieve before facing Barcelona in La Liga
Real Madrid are currently the frontrunners to win the La Liga title this season, having established a solid lead atop the table.
After 26 matchdays, Carlo Ancelotti’s Los Blancos have built a six-point lead over second-placed Girona and are eight clear of arch-rivals Barcelona in third.
Ancelotti sets a target
While Real Madrid have already faced Girona and Atletico Madrid twice in La Liga already, they still have to face Barcelona for the second time.
And, as per AS, manager Carlo Ancelotti has set a target for his Real Madrid side to achieve before they face off against Xavi Hernandez’s Barça in a few weeks.
Los Blancos host their bitter rivals at the Santiago Bernabeu in the weekend of April 20-21, in matchweek 32.
And before that, Ancelotti wants Real Madrid to reach 80 points in La Liga, which he believes is the safety point for his team to go on to win the title.
As things stand, the Merengues are on 65 points from 26 games and have five matches to play in the league before they face Barcelona.
And for them to achieve Ancelotti’s intended target, they will have to win each of their matches between now and April 20, which will be anything but straightforward.
After all, Real Madrid are set to face Valencia at a hostile Mestalla this weekend before they take on a Celta Vigo side battling to avoid relegation next week.
Following that, they face a tricky Osasuna side away from home and Athletic Club at home while they will also take on Copa del Rey finalists RCD Mallorca.
Ancelotti wants the La Liga title race wrapped up by this point so that the team can face Barcelona without any pressure and instead keep their focus on the UEFA Champions League, provided they progress in the tournament.
It will be easier said than done, but if we have learned anything from Real Madrid this season, it is that they thrive in the face of adversities.