Transfer: “We can’t afford to fight financially”- Dortmund CEO, Hans-Joachim Watzke on Bellingham

According to CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, Jude Bellingham can leave Borussia Dortmund if major European clubs approach them because the German club “cannot afford to fight financially.”

A number of elite clubs have expressed interest in Bellingham as a result of his impressive start to the season, which has seen him contribute to 12 goals across all competitions, earning him a spot in England’s World Cup squad.

Rumors suggest that the midfielder, who joined Dortmund from Birmingham City as a 17-year-old in 2020 for an initial sum of £25 million, is attractive to clubs like Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Manchester City.

Dortmund reportedly wants a fee of €100 million for Bellingham to go, but should a bidding battle break out for his services, that sum might rise to €150 million.

Hans-Joachim Watzke’s comment

While Bellingham hasn’t openly expressed a desire to leave Dortmund, Watzke is aware that if that changes and the best teams start calling, it will be challenging to hold onto him.

“We will hold talks now, as soon as [the World Cup in] Qatar is over,” Watzke told Bild. “Then we’ll have a fundamental talk about what he would like.

“He just needs to tell us if he’d like to stay or if he’d like to go. In both cases we’ll talk about it very pleasantly and reasonably together.

“In general we can imagine that he’d stay with us, but we can’t behave as if this topic wasn’t on the table.

“If he says ‘I’d like to do something else,’ then the really big [clubs] in Europe will be there and we can’t afford to fight financially.”

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