By Robert O’Connor, PA
Borussia Dortmund manager Edin Terzic said the prospect of Jude Bellingham leaving the club was a matter for the future and that all focus was on Tuesday’s Champions League meeting with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
The 19-year-old has starred during Dortmund’s run of 10-straight wins in all competitions which has seen them move level on points with Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich.
They take a 1-0 lead into the second leg of their last-16 tie following victory at the Signal Iduna Park three weeks ago, and Terzic promised that talk of a Premier League move for Bellingham would not affect his side in west London.
“With all respect for Jude and his performance, we are answering these kinds of questions since he arrived (in 2020),” said Terzic.
“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.”
Former Liverpool midfielder Emre Can, whose brilliant goal-line clearance from Kalidou Koulibaly in the first leg preserved Dortmund’s lead in the tie, added that Bellingham must be given space to make the right decision about his future amidst interest from the Reds.
“He’s a world-class talent, everybody knows his potential,” said Can. “Jude has to know himself what he is doing. It’s difficult to say what is best for him. He and his family have to decide that.”