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Soccer-Real Madrid to sign Bellingham from Dortmund for 103 million euros


(Reuters) – Borussia Dortmund have agreed to sell England midfielder Jude Bellingham to Spanish giants Real Madrid for an initial fee of 103 million euros ($110.4 million), the Bundesliga club said in a statement on Wednesday.

The 19-year-old, who had been linked with several major European clubs, joined Dortmund from Birmingham City in 2020 for 25 million pounds ($31.17 million), becoming the most expensive 17-year-old in football history.

He quickly became a regular in the Dortmund side, anchoring the midfield and starting over 30 Bundesliga games in each of his last two seasons in Germany.

England manager Gareth Southgate made Bellingham the youngest English player to represent his country at a major tournament during the 2021 European Championship.

He soon became a permanent fixture in England’s midfield, playing all five games at the World Cup in Qatar where they were knocked out in the quarter-finals by France.

Bellingham was linked with Premier League clubs who wanted to bring him home, including Liverpool whose manager Juergen Klopp said they were forced to pull out of the race to sign him due to his price tag.

At Real Madrid, he will join a side rich in young midfield talent in Federico Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni as the club look to build for the future and replace long-time stalwarts Toni Kroos and Luka Modric.

Dortmund said the variable transfer compensation paid by Real will be a maximum of around 30% of the initial fee based on Bellingham’s performances and the Spanish club’s success on the pitch.

($1 = 0.9331 euros)

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Chopra, editing by Ed Osmond)

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