Liverpool can expect no ‘gifts’ from Borussia Dortmund in their pursuit of Jude Bellingham despite the clubs' strong relationship, according to the Bundesliga’s side managing director.
Carsten Cramer acknowledged Dortmund’s connections with Jurgen Klopp makes Liverpool the German side’s favourite English club, but when it comes to the business of Bellingham’s future there will be no sentiment.
“We have a high sympathy for Liverpool for sure. We are still in a good relationship with Jurgen and many others at Liverpool, so for me, it's my preferred club in the EPL as well. But don't expect that we will make gifts to Liverpool,” said Cramer.
Bellingham has demonstrated why he is one of the world’s most wanted footballers at the Qatar World Cup, his classy midfield displays underlining why he is Klopp’s No 1 transfer target.
Liverpool have made no secret of their wish for a high-class central midfielder, although in recent weeks they have also advertised their concerns about being unable to win a bidding war when a player's value soars.
Klopp was not even in the conversation when Erling Haaland left Dortmund last summer as his salary at Manchester City is double what anyone at Anfield is earning.
City, Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester United have all been linked with a move for the 19-year-old, and the limits of Liverpool’s spending explain why they are more openly seeking an injection of cash.
The situation at Anfield has also become more complicated since sporting director Julian Ward handed in his notice to quit at the end of the season.
Speaking during Dortmund’s winter tour of Vietnam, Cramer said Dortmund still hope to keep Bellingham for the remainder of his contract, which runs until 2025.
“Maybe there is a success existing between Jude Bellingham and (England’s) success in the World Cup,” Cramer said in an interview with Vietnam News.
“He (Jude) has a contract. I'm a sales person regarding commercial business, but not regarding the player's business.
“We are happy to have him on board a hundred percent and the longer Jude will play for us, the better it will be.”