Dortmund CEO plans talks with City, Liverpool target Bellingham; Guardiola discusses future

Borussia Dortmund chief Hans-Joachim Watzke has said he is planning to sit down with Jude Bellingham after the World Cup to discuss his future.

Bellingham is attracting plenty of interest with a bidding war on the cards in 2023.

He is valued anywhere between £100-150million after two-and-a-half superb years with the German club.

The 19-year-old is likely to start for England at the World Cup with the Three Lions first match of the tournament taking place on November 21.

Manchester City are reportedly in pole position to sign the teenager, with Real Madrid and Liverpool also in the mix.

Bellingham was a part of the England squad which reached the final of the European Championships last year.

He only played 55 minutes in the tournament, spanning across three matches, however.

His role in Qatar is expected to be a lot bigger, with manager Gareth Southgate handing him a large number of minutes in his side’s Nations League campaign.

Yet to score for his country, expectations are high, with many anticipating a huge World Cup from Bellingham.

And after the tournament, when he returns to his club, it will be time for crunch talks over his future.

Dortmund CEO Watzke has confirmed that this is the case.

The Bundesliga club are obviously eager to extend the player’s contract and there have been some reports suggesting they feel confident that Bellingham will be happy to stay put.

Watzke told BILD: “I think as soon as Qatar is over, we’re going to have a basic conversation about what he actually wants.

“With him, with his parents, with whom we have a very close relationship and of course with his advisor.

“And then he should just tell us whether he wants to stay or whether he wants to go. Either way, we’ll discuss it pleasantly and reasonably.

“But we don’t have to pretend that the topic isn’t on the table. When the really big [teams] are there, we can’t afford to fight financially either.”

A transfer to Manchester City would be very unfair and Bellingham would link up with his former Dortmund teammate, Erling Haaland, at the Etihad if a deal materialises.

Manager Pep Guardiola has recently discussed his future at the club.

The Spaniard has admitted that he is not the only one who deserves praise for City’s success on the pitch.

“[Would I] stay in another place for seven years? No, I don’t think so. It is difficult to find what I have here as a manager,” Guardiola said.

“To be a manager for a long time you need to be so supported. The results help a lot, that is undeniable. In this world they sack you, they fire you, we know that.

“But, at big clubs, part of the success of the manager is the chairman, the sporting director especially, the CEOs and all the people here.

“It goes to the media, fans and players. There is stability. This is why I think only in few clubs this can happen.”

With his contract expiring next year, the club’s hierarchy may see the World Cup break as the perfect time to discuss a new deal.

Guardiola refused to say whether or not any discussions are planned, keeping his cards close to his chest.

“I’ve said many times, I don’t talk about that,” he said.

“Everything is under control, it’s perfect, the decision will be made together with the club the moment it has to be made.

“When we have time, when the moment we feel it both sides, we take a decision.”

READ MORE: Arsenal 22-23 > Leicester 15-16 if they win Premier League; Spurs likened to World Cup favourites

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