Manchester United are reportedly set to miss out on the signing of Jude Bellingham from Birmingham City.
As per ESPN, Borussia Dortmund are set to seal a summer swoop for the teenage midfielder, who United courted openly in January.
If that happens, it will be the second time in a matter of months United have lost out to Dortmund in a very public transfer chase.
In January, United very openly pursued Erling Haaland but he ended up joining Dortmund from RB Salzburg.
That was an embarrassing defeat in the transfer market, especially because Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made no secret of his desire to land his countryman.
There was also a marked contrast between United’s open and ultimately unsuccessful approach to the move and Dortmund’s quiet, effective strategy, which has seen them recruit far more effectively than the Reds for a number of years now.
Bellingham going to Dortmund when United so openly and expensively courted him just months ago would be another damaging blow and further evidence – as if it was needed – that the club’s transfer operation is in need of improvement.
A glimmer of hope?
The report says Dortmund are ready to seal a club record deal for Bellingham, in the form of around 35 million euros (£30.5 million) in training compensation.
That’s out of character for a club who tend to buy low and sell high. Could they be expecting to get money in this summer for Jadon Sancho?
Sancho, like Haaland and potentially Bellingham, has used his time at Dortmund to further his development and may well be ready for the next stage of his career this summer?
The Telegraph reported earlier this week that United are leading the chase for Sancho.
Perhaps the only plus side of United missing out on Bellingham is it may indirectly indicate Sancho is one step closer to moving to Old Trafford.
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