This article is part of Football League World’s ‘Terrace Talk‘ series, which provides personal opinions from our FLW Fan Pundits regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
16-year-old Jobe Bellingham is the younger brother of Jude Bellingham and is currently with Birmingham City U18s although has already made two appearances for the senior team.
Therefore, we asked FLW’s Birmingham City fan pundit Tom Oxland his thoughts on the potential move: “Personally I think it would be a huge loss for the club but I can’t see it happening right now.
“If Sunderland got promoted then there’s definitely a lot more chance of it happening but if they weren’t to get promoted through the play-offs then I would probably rule out that deal completely.
“Obviously there are a few factors that come into play, obviously Speakman [Kristjaan] being former Blues and obviously I’d say the main one is Mike Dodds being at Sunderland. Mike Dodds has a very good relationship with the Bellinghams and Jude developed very well under Dodds and I’m sure the Bellingham family will be looking at particular Dodds for help developing Jobe as well. Obviously Speakman had a small part in things as well.
“It would be an amazing signing for Sunderland but I can’t see it happening but it would be a huge loss for us.
“Jobe has a lot of potential as well. He’s not quite performing at the level Jude was at his age but there’s still a real talent there and he certainly doesn’t seem phased by any of the pressure by carrying on the Bellingham name as well so we’ll wait and see.
“I think he’d develop well at Sunderland but obviously from a Blues point of view I hope he stays and I think he will.”
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This is an ambitious move from Sunderland and if his talent is anything like his brother’s, Birmingham fans have a right to be worried over losing the young player.
However, as Tom points out, this is very unlikely to happen should Sunderland lose in the play-off final and stay in League One.
As he knows and trusts people at Sunderland, if they are promoted then it will become a more attractive and likely prospect and there’s no doubt he would develop well there.
With the off the pitch problems at Birmingham too, Bellingham may feel as though a move would bring him stability.
However, this is something that will depend largely on Sunderland’s league status next season.