Some sources close to the case have come out to claim that Manchester City have made no concrete moves to solidify their interest in 19-year-old midfielder Jude Bellingham, who is close to joining Real Madrid in the summer.
Since breaking out at 16 years old from the Birmingham City academy, Bellingham has made a big splash in world football. After one year of senior football with the EFL Championship club, he has clubs from all across Europe lining up for his signature.
Following the advice of his coaches at the club, he would move to Germany to play for Borussia Dortmund, whose youth development approach to top-flight football is one of the best in the world.
There, Bellingham would gain incredible experience from playing against the beat in Germany and in Europe in the UEFA Champions League. He would also make his England Three Lions debut and become a mainstay in the team, all before turning 19.
He is now considered one of the best midfielders in the world and not just one of the best young midfielders in the world. The same clubs that were after him at Birmingham City are back for him.
This time, however, he costs a lot more than he did back then and the price tag has narrowed down the teams who will be able to pry him away from the German club.
Manchester City were one of the clubs with an interest in signing him. Their financial might would have given them a boost in the efforts to land him ahead of next season. However, Bellingham looks set to be headed for Spain to play with 14-time Champions League winners Real Madrid. This, it is now understood, is due to City not making any approaches to Dortmund to sign him.
The Athletic made these claims. The English sports media outlet also posits that top figures at Manchester City are of the opinion that Madrid is just being mischievous with their supposed readiness to pay £100 million to Dortmund for Bellingham.
This, it is believed, is in the same vein with their reported chase of Raheem Sterling towards their Champions League semi-final clash last season.
Madrid were revealed to have not held an interest in Sterling at all, instead using the media to cause some distraction for City ahead of the tie, which they would win.
Both teams may still duke it out for Bellingham, but in the meantime, they will have another Champions League semi-final to get out of the way, starting with the first leg at the Santiago Bernabeu this Tuesday.