Arsenal legend David Seaman has weighed in on the prospect of Jude Bellingham moving to the Emirates next summer. The teenager has already impressed in a starting role at the 2022 World Cup, with top clubs from around Europe queueing up to try and sign him from Borussia Dortmund.
Before this season, Arsenal directly competing with the likes of Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester City in the transfer market would have been considered virtually impossible. But Mikel Arteta has finally got an effective tune from his squad in north London, and they’re currently five points clear at the top of the Premier League.
Signing the 19-year-old would be a blockbuster way to solve their depth issue in midfield, while their high-flying status means a big-money move may not be entirely out of the question. Bellingham shone in England’s World Cup opener against Iran last week, scoring his first major tournament goal in an emphatic 6-2 win.
His performance in the goalless draw with USA was more subdued, but Bellingham remains in high demand ahead of an anticipated transfer tug-of-war next summer.
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If Arsenal do formally join the £130million race for Bellingham, they may have to make up ground on Liverpool and Madrid, who are considered by many to be the front-runners. Manchester United have also scouted the midfielder extensively, while Manchester City can provide him with the allure of working under Pep Guardiola and alongside former Dortmund team-mate Erling Haaland.
Despite Bellingham’s blatant promise, some England fans are calling for a midfield reshuffle after a lacklustre display against the USA. James Maddison is among the players vying for major tournament minutes, but Seaman reckons that Gareth Southgate should handle the injured Leicester City star cautiously.
“His role at the tournament will depend on how his injury is,” he added. “That’s the most important thing. Don’t forget, you’ve got Kyle Walker to come back in as well. With Maddison, it’s just a case of making sure he’s ready when he comes in.
“He can come on and affect games. You’ve also got Kalvin Phillips who can provide something more defensively. But with Maddison you’ve got that option of attacking, putting him on set pieces. He’s a good inclusion in the squad but you’ve got to make sure he’s fit first and foremost.”