Jude Bellingham

Fortitude

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I do believe he will be coming straight into our squad as a 17 year old for next season if we sign him.
Really? 'Squad' is terribly ambiguous, though. Even then, getting a place on the bench in a midfield unit of: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Matic and potentially another midfielder - all players who are £30m+ in their own right (or have the ability of someone in that bracket, regarding Matic) is a tall order. In the extreme.

As I said before in this thread, Bellingham would have to come in and usurp someone to genuinely be a fixture in our squad proper, as in a viable option completely irrespective of his age. Who do you see him usurping from that bunch to be a genuine 1st teamer next season?

Even asked another way: let's say there are players in that mix who would be placed in specific roles in the rotation: Pogba & Fernandes being #10's and #8's, even a #6 for Pogba at times; Fred and McTominay both being the #8's and obviously Matic and very likely another as #6's - where is Bellingham taking up a role, or better asked, taking it off the specialists mentioned?

Not a knock on the kid, but you're talking prodigy for the ages, already presupposed to become an all-time great, to come in and do that. Is that what you class Bellingham as?

Getting him here is one thing, giving him proper playing time whilst we're in the hunt for the league, really is another.
 

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I do believe he will be coming straight into our squad as a 17 year old for next season if we sign him.
Id think so. At the risk of sounding sarcastic, Generally, with youth players, do you really send your assistant manager to watch them play live, give them a tour of the training ground meeting the top hierarchy and club legends, and then pay £30m for a player who is an automatic starter in the league below, to then mothball them in the under23 nursery?
 

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Really? 'Squad' is terribly ambiguous, though. Even then, getting a place on the bench in a midfield unit of: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Matic and potentially another midfielder - all players who are £30m+ in their own right (or have the ability of someone in that bracket, regarding Matic) is a tall order. In the extreme.

As I said before in this thread, Bellingham would have to come in and usurp someone to genuinely be a fixture in our squad proper, as in a viable option completely irrespective of his age. Who do you see him usurping from that bunch to be a genuine 1st teamer next season?

Even asked another way: let's say there are players in that mix who would be placed in specific roles in the rotation: Pogba & Fernandes being #10's and #8's, even a #6 for Pogba at times; Fred and McTominay both being the #8's and obviously Matic and very likely another as #6's - where is Bellingham taking up a role, or better asked, taking it off the specialists mentioned?

Not a knock on the kid, but you're talking prodigy for the ages, already presupposed to become an all-time great, to come in and do that. Is that what you class Bellingham as?

Getting him here is one thing, giving him proper playing time whilst we're in the hunt for the league, really is another.
he looks really good for his age and our recruitment has improved a lot in the last year at least. If our scouts say we need this guy then we need this guy. I agree about where he’s going to get enough games next season and I also wonder what his longterm position is. Who’s place in the squad is he going to be taking? If it’s lingard or pereira then that’s fine. He’ll still get games next year and hopefully grow into the squad over the next few seasons.
 

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Really? 'Squad' is terribly ambiguous, though. Even then, getting a place on the bench in a midfield unit of: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Matic and potentially another midfielder - all players who are £30m+ in their own right (or have the ability of someone in that bracket, regarding Matic) is a tall order. In the extreme.

As I said before in this thread, Bellingham would have to come in and usurp someone to genuinely be a fixture in our squad proper, as in a viable option completely irrespective of his age. Who do you see him usurping from that bunch to be a genuine 1st teamer next season?

Even asked another way: let's say there are players in that mix who would be placed in specific roles in the rotation: Pogba & Fernandes being #10's and #8's, even a #6 for Pogba at times; Fred and McTominay both being the #8's and obviously Matic and very likely another as #6's - where is Bellingham taking up a role, or better asked, taking it off the specialists mentioned?

Not a knock on the kid, but you're talking prodigy for the ages, already presupposed to become an all-time great, to come in and do that. Is that what you class Bellingham as?

Getting him here is one thing, giving him proper playing time whilst we're in the hunt for the league, really is another.
To be honest, I dont think pogba will be here next year. Matic, pereira, Mata and lingard will likely be on the periphary or sold. Gomes hasnt signed a contract. So we’re probably only adding him to Fernandes Mctominay and Fred in terms of players here for the long term
 

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Really? 'Squad' is terribly ambiguous, though. Even then, getting a place on the bench in a midfield unit of: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Matic and potentially another midfielder - all players who are £30m+ in their own right (or have the ability of someone in that bracket, regarding Matic) is a tall order. In the extreme.

As I said before in this thread, Bellingham would have to come in and usurp someone to genuinely be a fixture in our squad proper, as in a viable option completely irrespective of his age. Who do you see him usurping from that bunch to be a genuine 1st teamer next season?

Even asked another way: let's say there are players in that mix who would be placed in specific roles in the rotation: Pogba & Fernandes being #10's and #8's, even a #6 for Pogba at times; Fred and McTominay both being the #8's and obviously Matic and very likely another as #6's - where is Bellingham taking up a role, or better asked, taking it off the specialists mentioned?

Not a knock on the kid, but you're talking prodigy for the ages, already presupposed to become an all-time great, to come in and do that. Is that what you class Bellingham as?

Getting him here is one thing, giving him proper playing time whilst we're in the hunt for the league, really is another.
If he really is as good as the hype suggests then I can easily see a 17 year old Bellingham taking minutes from McTominay and Fred. Bellingham from what I've heard from people is a mercurial talent who has very good passing range/vision which would be a upgrade on McTominay and Fred in that department.

Also Pogba and Fernandes can't play every game so Bellingham can deputise for either if required. I can see him get plenty of minutes with the the amount of games/competitions next season.

Laurie Whitwell just yesterday said that we're going all in for Bellingham. And you don't go all in for a player if the plan is to send him out on loan.
 

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Id think so. At the risk of sounding sarcastic, Generally, with youth players, do you really send your assistant manager to watch them play live, give them a tour of the training ground meeting the top hierarchy and club legends, and then pay £30m for a player who is an automatic starter in the league below, to then mothball them in the under23 nursery?
The plan quite clearly is to bring him into the first team squad IMO. Phelan like you mention personally scouted him which is quite telling IMO. It's also been reported that Solskjaer sees the potential acquisition of Bellingham as being for the first team.
 

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If Bellingham comes he'll replace the role in the squad that everybody wanted to give to Angel Gomes. Big young talent that is backup to the first choice midfielders and plays on a rotational basis and in cup competitions.
 

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he looks really good for his age and our recruitment has improved a lot in the last year at least. If our scouts say we need this guy then we need this guy. I agree about where he’s going to get enough games next season and I also wonder what his longterm position is. Who’s place in the squad is he going to be taking? If it’s lingard or pereira then that’s fine. He’ll still get games next year and hopefully grow into the squad over the next few seasons.
We have to look at this logically and honestly as there is no point in saying we can give him fairy dust minutes and not consider the obstacles in his way. He's a starter and a star at Birmingham City, it's not much by our standards, but for him, it's guaranteed name on the team sheet game in and game out unless rested. It's already a massive drop to go from that to bit part player in a first team and the notion of putting him in the reserves is absolutely risible, so then, you have to look at the first squad and pair him off with its incumbents, which I already did.

Let's forget about Lingard and Pereira; they are already phased out and that's before Pogba's return and the transfer window. The realistic way for Bellingham to get minutes that are appropriate would be with Pogba sold and him being the replacement. The current climate absolutely does not lend itself to secure players going anywhere nor clubs already tightening purse strings to spend large amounts of money, further to that, without getting a look at Pogba post-surgery spending €110m+ on top of enormous wages is not going to happen.

In short, Pogba is not going anywhere until summer 2021, at the earliest, which means no chance for anyone vying for his minutes unless he breaks down again.

Fred and McTominay are vital components in our side. They are our engine. You take out an engine to put a better one in. Is Bellingham a better runner than either at the moment? I don't think so. Taking their minutes isn't going to happen.

Matic is our only DM and he may well be joined by another this summer. Can you place Bellingham at the base of midfield? I don't know: he looks like a CM or at least a player who should be involved in positive phases of play over destructive ones.

I'm all for the signing, but 2020/21 doesn't bode well for the kind of playing time his camp might think he warrants to keep his development optimal. Perhaps we loan him back, or send him to another club, but for me, that's a concern, too as you're dealing with a kid in his formative footballing years that you want coaches of your own (or of great repute) nurturing.

Him coming here right now and playing in the first squad is... challenging, to my mind.
 

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If he really is as good as the hype suggests then I can easily see a 17 year old Bellingham taking minutes from McTominay and Fred. Bellingham from what I've heard from people is a mercurial talent who has very good passing range/vision which would be a upgrade on McTominay and Fred in that department.

Also Pogba and Fernandes can't play every game so Bellingham can deputise for either if required. I can see him get plenty of minutes with the the amount of games/competitions next season.

Laurie Whitwell just yesterday said that we're going all in for Bellingham. And you don't go all in for a player if the plan is to send him out on loan.
See post above. Is he a superior runner to Fred or McTominay right now - in a manner he can take minutes off them? Do you really believe that?

Lest we forget both Fred and McTominay are in need of those minutes to improve their own games, too.

It's not easy to juggle in a way that keeps all parties happy.
 

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We have to look at this logically and honestly as there is no point in saying we can give him fairy dust minutes and not consider the obstacles in his way. He's a starter and a star at Birmingham City, it's not much by our standards, but for him, it's guaranteed name on the team sheet game in and game out unless rested. It's already a massive drop to go from that to bit part player in a first team and the notion of putting him in the reserves is absolutely risible, so then, you have to look at the first squad and pair him off with its incumbents, which I already did.

Let's forget about Lingard and Pereira; they are already phased out and that's before Pogba's return and the transfer window. The realistic way for Bellingham to get minutes that are appropriate would be with Pogba sold and him being the replacement. The current climate absolutely does not lend itself to secure players going anywhere nor clubs already tightening purse strings to spend large amounts of money, further to that, without getting a look at Pogba post-surgery spending €110m+ on top of enormous wages is not going to happen.

In short, Pogba is not going anywhere until summer 2021, at the earliest, which means no chance for anyone vying for his minutes unless he breaks down again.

Fred and McTominay are vital components in our side. They are our engine. You take out an engine to put a better one in. Is Bellingham a better runner than either at the moment? I don't think so. Taking their minutes isn't going to happen.

Matic is our only DM and he may well be joined by another this summer. Can you place Bellingham at the base of midfield? I don't know: he looks like a CM or at least a player who should be involved in positive phases of play over destructive ones.

I'm all for the signing, but 2020/21 doesn't bode well for the kind of playing time his camp might think he warrants to keep his development optimal. Perhaps we loan him back, or send him to another club, but for me, that's a concern, too as you're dealing with a kid in his formative footballing years that you want coaches of your own (or of great repute) nurturing.

Him coming here right now and playing in the first squad is... challenging, to my mind.
Your statement does make sense but only IF Pogba stays beyond this summer, it could go either way in my opinion
 

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See post above. Is he a superior runner to Fred or McTominay right now - in a manner he can take minutes off them? Do you really believe that?

Lest we forget both Fred and McTominay are in need of those minutes to improve their own games, too.

It's not easy to juggle in a way that keeps all parties happy.
He doesn't need to be a superior runner to either if his ability on the ball is superior. And if the club sign someone like Denis Zakaria then that aids Bellingham further and gives him a platform to create which is a strength of his.
 

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He doesn't need to be a superior runner to either if his ability on the ball is superior. And if the club sign someone like Denis Zakaria then that aids Bellingham further and gives him a platform to create which is a strength of his.
You can't throw out what those two have given us unless you replace with something vastly superior in terms of quality on the ball, which is where Pogba's inlet into a well-functioning midfield even comes into play. It's still a big risk to disrupt a functioning unit with Pogba, let alone a youngster experiencing the PL and the pressures of 3pts being a necessity on a game-by-game basis in front of 76,000 people and all the rest of it.

He may come in and just hit the ground running, but he may very well not. Then you have to cater for those growing pains, which is not easy in the centre of midfield.

It might sound like I'm being a Debby Downer about this, but I'd rather say I'm asking realistic questions that are immediate concerns if you're talking about Bellingham being a meaningful component in our midfield rotation.

Zakaria, Pogba, Fernandes is the midfield in the scenario you're presenting, imo. That's a locked midfield outside of injury and the odd rotation, which is not optimal for any of the guys on the bench, especially not a 16/17yr old who needs formative development catered to.
 

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Seems he's set to join Dortmund after all the hoopla,good move for them and him but slightly dissappointing after the club brought out the big guns
 

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Do Manchester United come to mind?
Why wouldn’t we. If we want to continue on our strategy of buying the best youngsters around some will need to be loaned out. People have been lauding Real’s recent strategy of brining in amazing young players and it seems we’re following their lead.
 

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He would be well advised to join Utd, he could form a very capable unit with Hannibal in the future. No doubt in my mind he would be in the mix next season, if Pereira is getting games he should.
 

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Not really. If a young player esp. a 16 year old is looking for regular first-team game time right away, then we can't compete with Dortmund as we certainly won't be able to give them that. If the young player is looking for development and coming through the system in a couple of years time, then we can compete. So it all depends on what Jude is looking for.
You really think he'd be a starter for Dortmund right away or you only saying that cos Jadon Sancho made such an early impact?
 

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You really think he'd be a starter for Dortmund right away or you only saying that cos Jadon Sancho was?
They've got Can, Witsel, Delaney, Dahoud for 2 midfield positions, he's hardly going to walk into their midfield either.
 

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He would be well advised to join Utd, he could form a very capable unit with Hannibal in the future. No doubt in my mind he would be in the mix next season, if Pereira is getting games he should.
He won't even be at the club next season, and with Pogba back, there would be zero minutes for Pereira or Lingard (or Gomez). Realistically, there are only minutes spare for games where Pogba and Fernandes are rested or cup games. There might not even be domestic cups next season - it really isn't easy to give playing time in a midfield that could wind up being one of, if not the best, in the entire league.

Those on the bench are reliant on injuries and fleeting rotation for game time. Who is going to be happy with that? McTominay and Matic will probably bide their time, Fred has been a revelation and would have every right to ask why he's not playing and then you've a kid who is used to playing every game then being in a midfield with superior players who, let's be honest, he cannot usurp (he isn't more talented than Pogba, and he's highly unlikely to take Fernandes' spot, who is already a crucial component in the midfield.)
 

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You really think he'd be a starter for Dortmund right away or you only saying that cos Jadon Sancho made such an early impact?
I'm saying he's more likely to get more first-team games at Dortmund than at United next season. Why is it even a doubt? Its been their modus operandi. Even in recent years, they've had Reyna, Sancho, Isaak, Pulisic playing a good amount of first team football at age 17.
 

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You can't throw out what those two have given us unless you replace with something vastly superior in terms of quality on the ball, which is where Pogba's inlet into a well-functioning midfield even comes into play. It's still a big risk to disrupt a functioning unit with Pogba, let alone a youngster experiencing the PL and the pressures of 3pts being a necessity on a game-by-game basis in front of 76,000 people and all the rest of it.

He may come in and just hit the ground running, but he may very well not. Then you have to cater for those growing pains, which is not easy in the centre of midfield.

It might sound like I'm being a Debby Downer about this, but I'd rather say I'm asking realistic questions that are immediate concerns if you're talking about Bellingham being a meaningful component in our midfield rotation.

Zakaria, Pogba, Fernandes is the midfield in the scenario you're presenting, imo. That's a locked midfield outside of injury and the odd rotation, which is not optimal for any of the guys on the bench, especially not a 16/17yr old who needs formative development catered to.
I think what's important in this situation is what Solskjaer wants and from reports it does seem like he wants to integrate Bellingham into the first team. And as far as McTominay and Fred are concerned, they'd still get plenty of minutes but they aren't a Roy Keane or Zinedine Zidane that have to be prioritised over a super talented 17 year old Bellingham who will likely become a far superior midfielder in the longrun.

It's also fine having concerns but I'd trust the judgement of the club coaches and senior scouts regards Bellingham's potential ability to play a rotational role in the first team.

Pogba, Fernandes, Zakaria would be my first choice midfield. And with the high volume of games in a footballing calendar, it's easy to see Bellingham playing more than enough games to aid his development. Even at Dortmund he'd be rotated and the same applies at the other interested clubs. So if we can't cater for his development, then neither can the other interested parties.
 

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Why wouldn’t we. If we want to continue on our strategy of buying the best youngsters around some will need to be loaned out. People have been lauding Real’s recent strategy of brining in amazing young players and it seems we’re following their lead.
My question was in response to you using Odegaard as a example.

Real Madrid have been buying up some very high profile young players from around the globe. But I wouldn't say we're following their lead per say. We as a club have always strategically targeted the cream of the crop, but such was the state of the academy under the watch of David Gill that we fell away for a number of years. It wasn't until the much maligned Ed Woodward took over, that our academy setup was given a major facelift and in subsequent years a substantial budget to target the best in class. A strategy we always used, especially at home.
 

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He is maybe talented but i would rather give chance to Mejbri and Gomes than spending 30 mil on another midfielder.
 

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He won't even be at the club next season, and with Pogba back, there would be zero minutes for Pereira or Lingard (or Gomez). Realistically, there are only minutes spare for games where Pogba and Fernandes are rested or cup games. There might not even be domestic cups next season - it really isn't easy to give playing time in a midfield that could wind up being one of, if not the best, in the entire league.

Those on the bench are reliant on injuries and fleeting rotation for game time. Who is going to be happy with that? McTominay and Matic will probably bide their time, Fred has been a revelation and would have every right to ask why he's not playing and then you've a kid who is used to playing every game then being in a midfield with superior players who, let's be honest, he cannot usurp (he isn't more talented than Pogba, and he's highly unlikely to take Fernandes' spot, who is already a crucial component in the midfield.)
Matic getting on, McT, Fred will be rotated. Enough games to give him games normally. Rotation, injuries will give him games fit for a 17 year old. But I agree with most of the things you said here.
 

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He seems to have the physicality to play in the Premier League already.

Presumably we are anticipating significant improvement from him next season and believe we will be able to enhance that development even further.

It’s not unlikely we want him involved next season with a view to him being ready at the end of it.

Any 17 y/o should really be giving it serious thought if they are considering turning down Man Utd. Certainly absolutely no reason for us to be considered a less favourable option than fecking Dortmund.
 

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My question was in response to you using Odegaard as a example.

Real Madrid have been buying up some very high profile young players from around the globe. But I wouldn't say we're following their lead per say. We as a club have always strategically targeted the cream of the crop, but such was the state of the academy under the watch of David Gill that we fell away for a number of years. It wasn't until the much maligned Ed Woodward took over, that our academy setup was given a major facelift and in subsequent years a substantial budget to target the best in class. A strategy we always used, especially at home.
And my response was to your statement 'And you don't go all in for a player if the plan is to send him out on loan'. I used Odegaard as an example that you should do so and that some do. If three other clubs are very vocally after a player lauded as one of the best young players in the country, why would you not go all in even if the plan is to send them out on loan and let them develop?

You also can't really call it a strategy we've always used if we haven't used it for about ten years. Woodward was very much a fan of a buying Galacticos and after years of that not working has most likely looked both elsewhere and back over our history. It's within the last year or two that we've seen the club spending a lot more on youth players than previously. We've gone from chasing some highly rated youth team players to chasing the MOST rated players in Europe, evidenced by how much we spent on Mejbrij and our attempts to buy Chekri. Players like Chong and TFM were very well regarded but not to the level of who we are after now.
 

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Fair enough @Adnan & @arthurka. As I've said a few times, I do hope we land him so I shan't present countless counter points, especially so since I'd be repeating myself a bit by doing so.

Just consider this, however:

AM: Fernandes, Pogba, Bellingham, Mejbri
CM: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Bellingham , Mejbri
DM: New guy, Matic, Pogba (DLP)

That's one hell of a challenge to establish yourself in unless you're outstanding, or actually have playing time reserved for you no matter what.

I think it's a fair point raised about Dortmund having a strong midfield, but there's isn't as difficult to break into as ours if these players deliver at their top level. @Adnan you mentioned other clubs vying for his signature, but Chelsea's midfield isn't particularly impressive and Kante looks like he's on the slide now (injuries are getting the best of him). Not to say Bellingham's camp would choose them over us, but it's certainly the easier proposition to claim a spot from.
 

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Gomes at CM looks like it doesn't work even if he does something at CAM doesn't it?
 

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Fair enough @Adnan & @arthurka. As I've said a few times, I do hope we land him so I shan't present countless counter points, especially so since I'd be repeating myself a bit by doing so.

Just consider this, however:

AM: Fernandes, Pogba, Bellingham, Mejbri
CM: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Bellingham , Mejbri
DM: New guy, Matic, Pogba (DLP)

That's one hell of a challenge to establish yourself in unless you're outstanding, or actually have playing time reserved for you no matter what.

I think it's a fair point raised about Dortmund having a strong midfield, but there's isn't as difficult to break into as ours if these players deliver at their top level. @Adnan you mentioned other clubs vying for his signature, but Chelsea's midfield isn't particularly impressive and Kante looks like he's on the slide now (injuries are getting the best of him). Not to say Bellingham's camp would choose them over us, but it's certainly the easier proposition to claim a spot from.
You could well be right and make some fair points which I can't really disagree with.
 

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Fair enough @Adnan & @arthurka. As I've said a few times, I do hope we land him so I shan't present countless counter points, especially so since I'd be repeating myself a bit by doing so.

Just consider this, however:

AM: Fernandes, Pogba, Bellingham, Mejbri
CM: Pogba, Fernandes, Fred, McTominay, Bellingham , Mejbri
DM: New guy, Matic, Pogba (DLP)

That's one hell of a challenge to establish yourself in unless you're outstanding, or actually have playing time reserved for you no matter what.

I think it's a fair point raised about Dortmund having a strong midfield, but there's isn't as difficult to break into as ours if these players deliver at their top level. @Adnan you mentioned other clubs vying for his signature, but Chelsea's midfield isn't particularly impressive and Kante looks like he's on the slide now (injuries are getting the best of him). Not to say Bellingham's camp would choose them over us, but it's certainly the easier proposition to claim a spot from.
Not that I disagree about Dortmund, he'd have a much easier pathway into the team. But for one thing, Pogba is a huge question mark next season, and maybe the charm offensive to sign Jude is partly because Ole knows Pogba is off, it's not outside the realm of possibilities. Meijbri might not necessarily be promoted into the first team next season and it's unlikely he'd be ahead of Bellingham who is physically already ready and has plenty of actual real game experience (I'm not saying I wouldn't like to see Meijbri break into the first team next season, I would).

Our midfield could simply be: Matic, McTom, Fred and Bellingham. With Bruno at #10 or in a more free role in a midfield 3. That's a lot of games between 4 midfielders.

And if we end up buying Sancho, I'd say that makes us - at least on paper - a more attractive side to join.
 

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And my response was to your statement 'And you don't go all in for a player if the plan is to send him out on loan'. I used Odegaard as an example that you should do so and that some do. If three other clubs are very vocally after a player lauded as one of the best young players in the country, why would you not go all in even if the plan is to send them out on loan and let them develop?

You also can't really call it a strategy we've always used if we haven't used it for about ten years. Woodward was very much a fan of a buying Galacticos and after years of that not working has most likely looked both elsewhere and back over our history. It's within the last year or two that we've seen the club spending a lot more on youth players than previously. We've gone from chasing some highly rated youth team players to chasing the MOST rated players in Europe, evidenced by how much we spent on Mejbrij and our attempts to buy Chekri. Players like Chong and TFM were very well regarded but not to the level of who we are after now.
Bellingham is a first team player at Birmingham City in a league which is far stronger than the one Odegaard was playing in at a similar age. And when you go all in for a player, as has been reported by The Athletic's, Laurie Whitwell. It's more than plausible to presume Solskjaer will integrate him into the first team squad and there's reputable Journos alluding to that being the case. Signing a player from the Championship which is a very physical league is testament to young Bellingham being more than capable of handling the physical demands of the EPL and by next season he likely will be better prepared at 17 years old. In Odegaards case he made a bad move joining Real Madrid at the time and should've taken a similar route to his compatriot Haaland which would've served him better. In Bellingham's case he will be joining Man Utd under Solskjaer who will play him IMO. Integrating Mason at 17 into the first team was testament to Solskjaer's bravery in showing faith in special young talent and Bellingham falls into the same category.

Woodward was a fan of backing the manager. The transfer strategy was set by the manager and the likes of Di Maria, Falcao etc were manager signings.

Tahith Chong was one of, if not the biggest attacking talents in the Netherlands playing in Rotterdam. TFM was regarded as being on a equal footing to Matthijs de Ligt as a 16 year old. When we signed these young players, we signed two of the biggest talents in European football.

I can call it a strategy because the strategy it self is set by the guys running the academy. But the strategy is only effective if the funds are there to support such a strategy. Funds that were not made available under David Gill which inturn saw the academy struggle until Woodward cleaned the mess of his predecessor.
 
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