Former Manchester United target Jude Bellingham revealed why he rejected a move to Old Trafford for Borussia Dortmund last summer.
The 17-year-old English midfielder has been constantly linked with a move to 20th Premier League Champions even spotted at Carrington training complex in March 2020 along with Red Devil executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward joined by former club coach Sir Alex Ferguson.
Bellingham opted to join Borussia Dortmund in a deal that could be worth up to £30m ahead of Manchester United and other top teams last summer.
The ex-Birmingham City youngster insisted that the desire to play regular first-team football was the driving factor behind his decision to switch England for Germany as he was quoted by BBC Sport.
“The only thing I was bothered about in making this decision was playing football. It’s as clear as day if you come here and do the right things, you will get your opportunity,”
“There are plenty of young players out there who, if given the chance, would shine at first-team level but they don’t quite get the chance for whatever reason. I’m almost an example, as well as many others in our first team, for just giving people a chance. Throw them in the deep end and see what they can do.
“There are a lot more in the Championship who can handle it. These players are often better than you would think. Jadon [Sancho] is a big example for someone English and my age. We’re all trying to play but, specifically, we’re trying to make that next step into Europe’s elite. Jadon has done that perfectly.
“There’s no denying that, and looking at his journey was a massive factor for me. I didn’t really speak to him before I came out, I sort of did it through other people. I would mention something and they would say: ‘Jadon thought the same about this or that.’ Hopefully I can mirror what he has done.
“Manchester United have a great squad – and my decision had nothing to do with Man United. Dortmund was the best place for me. After that, you ignore everything else.
“It’s been easy to build a connection because I can relate to my teammates a little bit more. A lot of them are in a similar boat, especially [Reinier] Jesus and Gio [Reyna], who are a similar age and points in our career.”
Bellingham has already become the club’s youngest ever goalscorer and the youngest Englishman to appear in the Champions League, making nine appearances in total.