Liverpool have reportedly decided to end their interest in signing Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham.
After a mixed first half of the campaign, the Merseyside giants are ready to freshen up their squad during 2023, particularly in the centre of the pitch.
At a time when a number of players are due to be out of contract in the summer, the likes of Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara and Fabinho are 32, 31 and 29 years of age respectively.
While Liverpool have already held a certain level of interest in Bellingham, reports have suggested that the admiration has intensified in recent months, helped by the 19-year-old’s performances for England at the World Cup.
On the back of those outings, it was at one stage alleged that Liverpool had become the favourites to wrap up a deal for the youngster, one which would cost at least £100m.
However, according to AS, Liverpool are prepared to take a back seat in the pursuit of one of the most highly-regarded players in the world.
The report claims that the Merseyside giants are preparing to end their interest in Bellingham because any deal would prove to be ‘so complicated’.
When quizzed on Bellingham last week, Klopp refused to get drawn on the former Birmingham City man, telling reporters: “It’s clear what ideas we have and how the necessity is from our point of view. All the rest doesn’t lie 100% in our hands.
“We always work with what we have got and that will not change. I don’t know about what amount of money you need exactly but I am not against investment to be honest.
“We will see what the future brings. Nobody knows in the moment but I’m convinced it will be good and the future is bright for us. At the moment we have to sort the present and that is what we are working on.”
The same report suggests that the Premier League giants will place more focus on trying to sign either of Benfica’s Enzo Fernandez or Fiorentina’s Sofyan Amrabat.
Furthermore, it alleges that Real Madrid now have a clearer path to trying to sign Bellingham at a time when Dortmund are said to be demanding €150m (£132.13m).
Los Blancos are reportedly confident that they are now the frontrunners to win the race for Bellingham, who still has just over two-and-a-half years remaining on his contract.
The same outlet claims that representatives of Bellingham have indicated that their preference is to move to the Bernabeu in the summer.