Birmingham boss provides Jude Bellingham transfer update amid Dortmund interest

Jude Bellingham’s absence from the Birmingham side which lost 1-0 to Leicester in the FA Cup fifth round on Wednesday was not because he is set to join Borussia Dortmund , says Blues boss Pep Clotet.

The teenage sensation has been heavily linked with a switch to the Bundesliga after a report emerged from German publication SportBild stating that Dortmund had agreed a £30.4m fee for Bellingham.

The 16-year-old was also the subject of strong interest from Manchester United in January and has missed just one league game for his boyhood club ever since breaking into the team back in August.

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After a hectic Christmas period, Bellingham was rested for the loss against Leicester with Clotet insisting it had nothing to do with the speculation surrounding the midfielder.

“I cannot tell you much more because first of all I am not aware because I am a head coach and it’s not my area the recruitment, the ins and outs, and I haven’t been informed yet,” the Spaniard said after the game.

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“I have been focused purely on the game. But let me cut some speculation that might happen, that rumour that you mentioned.

“First of all, for us it is very good because that means for us, a club like Birmingham, to be able to attract the interest of so many big clubs for a player that makes it through the academy and that we play and that we help in the first team that is fantastic.

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“But Jude was not here for that reason. He was not here because I wanted to rest him because his fatigue levels were a little bit high and I wanted to get him good rest to so he can be fresh and ready for Saturday.

“Because at the end of the day he is sixteen years old and he has been playing a lot of games lately and I didn’t want to put too much load on him.”

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