Liverpool report: Reds dealt major blow as Jude Bellingham's father holds talks with rival suitor
Liverpool face stiff competition for the signature of Jude Bellingham this summer
Liverpool have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of Jude Bellingham amid reports that the player's father held talks with Real Madrid this week.
The Reds are desperate to win the race for the signature of the in-demand Borussia Dortmund (opens in new tab) midfielder this summer.
Jurgen Klopp is keen to bolster his options in the engine room and Bellingham has emerged as Liverpool (opens in new tab)'s top target.
But Madrid (opens in new tab) may have stolen a march on the Reds, whom they will face in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie next week.
According to Foot Mercato (opens in new tab), Bellingham's dad met with Juni Calafat, Madrid's director of international football, at a hotel in London ahead of Dortmund's 2-0 defeat by Chelsea (opens in new tab) in the Champions League on Tuesday night.
That suggests Madrid are in pole position to land Bellingham at the end of the season, when he is expected to bid farewell to Signal Iduna Park.
“With all respect for Jude and his performance, we are answering these kinds of questions since he arrived (in 2020),” Terzic said of Bellingham's future before the Chelsea game.
“Before he chose to join us, he had opportunities to join the Premier League. There was loads of interest from top-flight clubs.
“But he chose to join us because he knows it can be the perfect step for him. I think we’ve proven it both ways. He’s helping us a lot. But we as a club are helping him and his career as well.
“We are really happy that he’s part of our team, he’s one of our leaders at 19.
"He stepped into the England team as one of our players. But we know that we need a good performance from him tomorrow.
“It’ll be a topic for his future, but our future now is that we’re going to face a really tough opponent tomorrow and so we need him in a good way.”
More Liverpool stories
Manchester United (opens in new tab) are looking to jump to the front of the queue to sign Liverpool target Alexis Mac Allister (opens in new tab), according to reports.
Liverpool and Newcastle could go head-to-head (opens in new tab) for a teenage talent currently contracted to Real Madrid (opens in new tab).
And we have taken a look at Liverpool's top 10 scorers in the Premier League (opens in new tab) after Mohamed Salah's record-breaking goal last weekend.
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Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).