Jude Bellingham has offered encouragement to potential suitors Liverpool by suggesting his best position is as a number eight.
The England international has been linked with a move to Anfield in the summer of 2023, though other teams are also likely to be sniffing around. Liverpool could be set to lose both Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, with the pair out of contract at the end of the season, and reinforcements will be needed.
With Bellingham filling a number of midfield roles for club and country, his suitability for Jurgen Klopp's side had been called into question. However, comments made by the former Birmingham City man ahead of England's UEFA Nations League game against Italy will be music to Klopp's ears.
"I try and avoid the talk, really. I just want to play well whenever I'm on the pitch," Bellingham told Channel 4 in the lead-up to England's defeat in Milan. "When I play for Dortmund I want to win the game, and when I play for England I want to show people [what I can do".
"It was obviously a big fee but I can't really say I ever felt the pressure. I felt pretty confident in my own ability that I could get in the team and I could play.
"I've gained a lot of experience over the past two or so years. Played in a lot of big games. I've been really fortunate to be trusted in a lot of big moments and I think I've helped and delivered in those."
Should Bellingham start for England at the World Cup? Have your say in the comments section
When asked about his best position, Bellingham initially claimed he wasn't entirely sure. He has been used in a midfield pivot by England manager Gareth Southgate, especially when Kalvin Phillips has been sidelined by injury, but often plays further forward in the Bundesliga.
"I like getting forward but I also like to make tackles," he said, before talking through the pros and cons of different roles. "I think 8's probably the one that suits me the best," he concluded
His comments came after comparisons with Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard, while Alessandro Del Piero - on punditry duty for Italy v England, said he wished the youngster was playing in blue rather than white. "It's an honour really to be talked of in the same sentence as players like that, players I've looked up to," Bellingham added.
"Popping up and scoring against City, he's a Swiss-army knife," Gerrard's former England teammate Owen Hargreaves said. "He's up there with the best.
"Jude can be physical like Stevie G and play balls over the top, those are the players you've got to worry about. He starts for me [at the World Cup] definitely."
Gerrard himself has been complimentary of Bellingham, with the former Liverpool captain admitting he was a big admirer of the Dortmund man. "Someone sent that clip to me and it was a bit surreal," Bellingham revealed. I watched it three or four times and had to calm myself down."