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Real Madrid Make Jude Bellingham Top Target For 2023 In Next Phase Of Midfield Rebuild

Real Madrid have reportedly made teenager Jude Bellingham their top transfer target for 2023.

The European champions recently handed a new contract to Luka Modric until the end of the season when the Croatia midfielder will be 37.

According to AS, Real have identified Bellingham as the player they want to replace Modric next summer.

Borussia Dortmund midfielder Bellingham does not have a release clause in his current contract, so Real are unlikely to be able to get him for a modest fee.

AS claim that Liverpool and Chelsea are also keen on Bellingham and that competition for his signature could see his asking price go beyond €100 million.

Jude Bellingham pictured in action for England against Hungary in June 2022

Real Madrid are reportedly keen to sign England midfielder Jude Bellingham

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Real's star-studded midfield of Modric, 36, Toni Kroos, 32, and Casemiro, 30, were crucial in their victorious UEFA Champions League campaign last season.

But Real have already begun rebuilding their aging engine room by signing 22-year-old Aurelien Tchouamcni from Monaco for €100m this summer.

The addition of Bellingham - who turns 19 on Wednesday - would further future-proof Real in midfield, where they also have Eduardo Camavinga, 19, and Federico Valverde, 23 ready to step up.

Bellingham began his career with Birmingham City in England's Championship. He played 44 games for Birmingham before Dortmund made him the most expensive 17-year-old of all time in 2020 with a transfer fee in the region of £25m. 

He wore the no.22 jersey at Birmingham and the club decided to retire that squad number after he left.

Bellingham has been capped 15 times at senior international level and is expected to be part of England's 26-man World Cup squad in November.