Bellingham offer explained as Liverpool hatch transfer master plan for Dortmund midfielder

Editor F365
Jude Bellingham reacts

Liverpool have suddenly withdrawn their interest in Jude Bellingham. Except this is all part of a masterful transfer plan and everyone has been reeled in.


Ain’t it a shame?
Following Tuesday’s abhorrent reporting, how delightful it was to open up The Sun website and be greeted with this as their top story on the morning after two excellent Champions League quarter-finals:

‘Dele Alli’s girlfriend flashes her bum in miniskirt as she posts loved-up snaps together and cheekily trolls Everton ace’

Oh f**k off. And take the MailOnline (‘Dele Alli pictured for the first time since his hippy crack shame as his model girlfriend Cindy Kimberly shares snaps of her with the former Tottenham and England star after his loan spell in Turkey ended through injury’) with you.


In Rodri trust
Here is Ian Ladyman for the MailOnline on one of those actual very good football games:

‘Young Bayern midfielder Jamal Musiala probably would have scored had Ruben Dias not blocked his low shot. It was an important diversion. And within a minute or so, City led as Dias turned inside on the right and advanced in to space to curl a stunning left foot shot round Bayer captain Joshua Kimmich and beyond Sommer’s right hand in to the top corner. What a goal. What an unlikely scorer.’

Indeed. Who wants to tell him?


Hey Jude
Unfortunately for Manchester City and Inter Milan, their impressive European victories were at least partly overshadowed by news that Liverpool have withdrawn from the race to sign Jude Bellingham.

And that came as news to Jan Aage Fjortoft of, well, numerous outlets. He tweeted this at 7.27pm…

…about an hour or so before reports started to trickle in that Liverpool were no longer going to pursue the midfielder, starting with Paul Joyce of The Times.

Fair play to Fjortoft though, as he has not only kept that tweet up but kindly offered a theory as to what happened.

‘Timeline 1. Bellingham is Liverpool’s number one – target,’ he wrote.

‘2. Reports saying Liverpool favorite to get him

‘3. I confirm a Liverpool – offer been sent to Dortmund

‘4. Straight after tweet: Reports: -Liverpool have pulled out

‘So I reckon the offer was FAR away from expected fee’

Liverpool suddenly pulling out of a move for a player they have targeted for about two years and been monitoring long before that, as soon as they had one offer rejected, is definitely more likely than Fjortoft simply initially getting it wrong.


Everything is fine
Even though their mastery of the transfer window has long since abandoned them, the temptation in some quarters is still to paint every decision Liverpool make with regards to player recruitment as some sort of genius move.

Over to the Daily Mirror website for this one:

‘Virgil van Dijk and Alisson show how Liverpool’s Jude Bellingham pursuit may not be over’

Let’s cut right to the chase and see just how ‘a look at their past transfer dealings suggests the pursuit may not be over’.

‘This is not the first time Liverpool have backed away from a transfer target sighting [sic] a fee that is too high to pay. The first incident came in the summer of 2017, when they pulled out of the race to sign Virgil van Dijk.’

Except they didn’t sight/cite the fee then. Liverpool withdrew their interest and apologised to Southampton specifically because they had been reported to the Premier League over their conduct, having allegedly illegally approached Van Dijk without contacting his club.

Liverpool went on to sign Van Dijk in the subsequent transfer window for a similar fee to those being touted the previous summer, so that hardly fits in with the current narrative about cost. But ‘closer to Bellingham’s story is the ultimately successful pursuit of current first-choice keeper Alisson,’ so here we go.

‘Back in February 2018, reports emerged suggesting that Liverpool had shelved their interest in the Brazilian. It was suggested that the Reds would instead put their faith in Loris Karius, with Chelsea and Real Madrid providing strong competition to sign Alisson.’

Mediawatch really is struggling to think of anything that happened between February 2018 and that summer which might have forced Jurgen Klopp to change his mind and persuaded Liverpool to sign Alisson.

It is an open secret that they want and need to reinforce their midfield so it doesn’t feel like the same thing is going on here.

‘The Bellingham situation is obviously much different to that of Van Dijk’s and Alisson.’

Then why the f**k are we here?

‘Liverpool are increasingly likely to miss out on European football all together next season and appear a far distance from challenging for trophies again.’

Well exactly. Thanks for saving us a job but still.

‘While Klopp will still be a big pulling factor, their nosedive in form means they are not as attractive as they once were. The squad is also in dire need of a rebuild, which means that buying a collection of players rather than making one marquee signing would be a better decision.’

Indeed. Plus while there was some interest in Van Dijk and Alisson, they were not in close to as much demand – nor as expensive – as Bellingham will be at the end of this season.

Just because some perennially hopeful fans on Twitter drag up some irrelevant stories from years ago about a better, more financially equipped Liverpool reportedly cooling interest in a player before later signing the, doesn’t mean you have to base an entire spurious story around it before deconstructing the whole idea yourselves.


Here we… no!
“Liverpool will try until the end, we had reports of Liverpool almost out of the race for Bellingham. But what I can tell you is that Liverpool will insist until the end because they know it’s up to the player, he has to decide. And so Liverpool are still in the race” – Fabrizio Romano, April 8.

“The end”, it turns out, is when they realise three days later that Bellingham might be a bit expensive.


Fox ache
‘Troubled Leicester could provide Arsenal with unusual Premier League title omen’ – Daily Mirror website.

Arsenal’s last two Premier League title wins coincided with Leicester’s two most recent Premier League relegations, you see? That really is an irresistible omen, as long as you ignore the fact that Blackburn won the title – and Arsenal recorded their lowest-ever Premier League finish – the last time Leicester were relegated from the top flight before that.