According to a report by “Bild”, Borussia Dortmund’s courted midfielder Jude Bellingham will reject an offer from the second Bundesliga team for an early contract extension until 2026. The 19-year-old decided this for himself, although he was also offered a significantly improved salary, it said on Monday evening. The England international’s contract in Dortmund runs until June 30, 2025.

With two goals, Bellingham helped BVB to be just one point behind record champions Bayern Munich with three games remaining. He came to BVB from Birmingham City in the summer of 2020 for 25 million euros.

There has been speculation for weeks about a move from Bellingham to Spanish record champions Real Madrid. BVB sports director Sebastian Kehl had emphasized on Sunday before Dortmund’s 6-0 home win against VfL Wolfsburg: “There is currently no new status, no offer, nothing that we can announce.” Kehl added: “That the rumors to pick up speed for such a player is not surprising. The season is entering its final phase, also in the other leagues.”

Meanwhile, the Madrilenians are looking forward to the Champions League semi-final smash against Manchester City and don’t want to be disturbed by derogatory comments from England. “A year ago there were similar words,” said Toni Kroos on Monday in Madrid, recalling the semi-final victory over ManCity last season and the subsequent triumph in the final. “No one expected last year that we would win. And we still have that,” added the 2014 soccer world champion before the first leg on Tuesday (9 p.m. / Amazon Prime Video) in Madrid’s Santiago Bernabéu.

Kroos referred, among other things, to statements by Wayne Rooney. England’s ex-international had claimed that coach Pep Guardiola’s team would not only eliminate Real in the semi-finals, but “destroy them”. Such words would not affect the attitude of the Madrilenians, said Kroos, who now almost always answers in Spanish in Spain. “They didn’t give us any additional motivation, because you can’t be more motivated than we are.”