Manchester United should to take an “expensive gamble” and sign Jude Bellingham this summer, according to Rio Ferdinand.
The Birmingham City teenager is considered to be one of Europe’s brightest young prospects and has been heavily linked with a move to Old Trafford.
But the 16-year-old is also wanted by the likes of Borussia Dortmund, while Real Madrid and Barcelona have been mentioned.
Bellingham has scored four goals in 32 appearances since bursting onto the scene in the Championship and is almost certain to leave in the summer.
United are understood to have made the youngster a top transfer target and have already pulled out the stops to impress him and his family.
The Blues value Bellingham at £30m which Ferdinand admits is “phenomenal”, but he has urged his former club to take a gamble on the midfielder.
“Jude Bellingham, huge talent, huge talent, really good-looking footballer in the way he plays, the balance he’s got, the maturity at such a young age,” Ferdinand said on Instagram Live.
“I want to see more but the price tag is phenomenal. £30m-odd for a kid, for a 16-year-old boy, it’s unbelievable.
“But it’s the way of the world now and the way you’ve got to think about it, if you’re paying £30m, if we keep him for 10 years it’s money well spent.
“It’s a gamble, it’s an expensive gamble, but the kid to be playing in the Championship and doing what he’s doing and looking the player he is, it’s a gamble but a calculated one.
“I think he’s someone I would 100 per cent take. If I’m Man United now, go in and get him.”
Indeed, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keen to have more young, homegrown players feature in his United squad going forward and Bellingham fits the bill.
Chelsea are also interested in the starlet but it is thought that Dortmund could offer up the best challenge to the Red Devils.
The Bundesliga side are famous for nurturing young talent with Jason Sancho and prime example and for attracting players to the club.