Everton winger Andros Townsend has urged reported Liverpool target Jude Bellingham to stay at Borussia Dortmund.
Bellingham is the subject of a much-publicised transfer battle involving several elite level clubs, including Liverpool.
But speaking after the 19-year-old’s brilliant performance on Monday for England, Townsend took to TalkSPORT to give him some transfer advice.
“I’d say stay there a bit longer, because if he comes to the Premier League he’s going to be £150m odd and we’re going to have a similar effect to Paul Pogba,” said the former England man.
“Bellingham scores goals, but his main quality is not scoring goals. So, the media, everyone, is going to be expecting him to score goals and when he doesn’t do that, even if he’s playing well, they’re going to be on his back and we’re going to have a Jack Grealish situation. So, for me, stay in Germany, do what you’re doing and maybe further along the line come back.”
Perfect timing for Bellingham evolution
This seems like quite strange advice, really. There is some suggestion that Dortmund are actually confident of keeping Bellingham. But the smart money says the teenager will be on the move.
Whether or not that’s to Liverpool, only time will tell. The Reds are certainly well in with a shout, though. Either way, Jude will land himself at a top club sooner rather than later.
With a move like that, scrutiny comes with the territory. It’s up to the player himself on how he handles that. Some, like the players Townsend mentions, perhaps aren’t as equipped to deal with it.
But Bellingham appears to have an incredibly strong mentality. Already mature enough to captain Borussia Dortmund, you’d back him to deal with pressure from the media.
Should he wait another year, that pressure will be no less intense. In fact, having probably kicked on another level with his club and country, it may even be greater.
For some players, it’s the right choice to stay where they are, definitely. No one likes to see a big talent move too soon and de-balance their career.
There really doesn’t seem to be any danger of that with Bellingham, though. He’ll definitely have a poor period at some stage, all players do. But the Premier League is surely where he should be.
Sooner or later that move is going to come around. With three-and-a-half season of first team football already behind him, the time appears to be right.