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Liverpool: McManaman reveals key factor in Jude Bellingham race

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The England international has emerged as Liverpool’s number one transfer target for the next summer.

Former Liverpool star Steve McManaman believes qualifying for the Champions League could be a key factor in Jude Bellingham’s race.

The Reds are competing against a host of elite clubs for signing the Borussia Dortmund midfielder. The English giants are reportedly leading the race alongside Real Madrid.

However, McManaman believes having a spot in the next season’s Champions League could help the Blancos edge out Liverpool.

“To be very honest, I think it’ll all come down to whether Liverpool qualifies for the Champions League next year,” the former Liverpool star said (via Liverpool Echo).

“Liverpool have been knocked out of the Champions League in the round of 16 by Real Madrid. So as a result of that, they’ve now lost money by not progressing further. Failing to reach the semi-finals or final of the Champions League could cost a club £20-£30million.”

“If they don’t qualify for the Champions League, then there’s another £50million in prize money that won’t be available to them and that’s an issue. If that was to happen, then the fact that they won’t be playing in the Champions League will be another big problem.

“Up until now, Jude’s been playing in the competition every single year for Borussia Dortmund. There’s no way that Jude will want to go and play in the Europa League. Because he will want to test himself against the best.”