Jude Bellingham, a wunderkind for Borussia Dortmund, has already told Manchester United what they need to do if they want to recruit him.
The Englishman is swiftly becoming the most sought-after young talent in the world, and he demonstrated his abilities on home soil this week. His first goal against Manchester City on Wednesday night was the icing on the cake after an excellent individual effort.
Bellingham is demonstrating why, at the age of 19, he is poised to become a major component in the midfield of a top European club once he leaves Signal Iduna Park. There will be a lot of interest in the adolescent, and the gossip mill has already linked United, Chelsea, and Liverpool with him.
Bellingham told prospective clubs exactly what they needed to do to sign him in May of this year. “I control my destiny,” he told Ruhr Nachrichten BVB (via 90 min).
“I know that if I work hard and trust the people around me, I will be able to progress. As a young talent, I came from England. There wasn’t a lot of pressure. The first season was a success. I also sat on the bench in some games and did not play at all in others.
“I believe my growth this year has resulted in me playing a larger part in every game but two. I am extremely grateful to Dortmund for developing my talent.
“I believe a large part of the credit goes to the coaching staff and the people that keep the noise going around me. This way, I can just concentrate on winning matches, which is why I’m here.”
The trick for United will be to persuade Bellingham that a transfer to Old Trafford is a “step forward” rather than a “step back.” His young career has been well managed, and the results are obvious.
A move to Dortmund at such a young age would have been unthinkable for an Englishman 15 years ago. However, Bellingham took the risk, and it is evident that he will not back down.
As evidenced by previous performances, Erik ten Hag is attempting to develop a project at United. However, with teams interested that have been in better positions than the Reds in the recent decade, Ten Hag will have to work hard to sell the United dream to Bellingham and his fan base.