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Manchester City logo
Champions League | Quarter-Finals | 2nd Leg
Apr 17, 2024 at 8pm UK
Etihad Stadium
Real Madrid logo

Man City
1 - 1
Real Madrid

De Bruyne (76')
Grealish (59'), Gvardiol (61'), Rodri (90')
Rodrygo (12')
Carvajal (38'), Mendy (90+4')
Real Madrid win 4-3 on penalties

Jude Bellingham lifts lid on decision to reject Manchester City for Real Madrid

Bellingham lifts lid on decision to reject Manchester for Madrid
© Reuters
Jude Bellingham has said that joining Real Madrid last summer was an obvious choice for him despite interest from several other top clubs, including Manchester City.

Jude Bellingham has said that joining Real Madrid last summer was an obvious choice for him despite interest from several other top clubs, including Manchester City.

Los Blancos are set to face the defending European champions in Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final second-leg following an incredible 3-3 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu last week.

With away goals no longer holding double value, if the teams remain level after another 90 minutes, the match will proceed to extra time and potentially penalties.

The England international joined the La Liga champions last summer from Borussia Dortmund in a deal valued at up to £115m following discussions with numerous clubs.

England's Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring their second goal on March 26, 2024© Reuters

Bellingham turned down Man City before deciding on Real Madrid move

Pep Guardiola's side were among the clubs that tried to secure Bellingham's services from BVB last summer but were ultimately unsuccessful in convincing the 20-year-old to make the move.

"I had good chats with clubs including Dortmund and my family were great in helping me chew up that information," the 20-year-old explained. "It's difficult while you are still in the season to take in the information and process it and still have to play at the weekend or in the Champions League.

"I had conversations with other teams but when Madrid came in it was a no-brainer really. The size of the club, the project, the plan going forward, the chance to play with such amazing players. I just jumped at it. That's why I made my decision," Bellingham admitted in his pre-match press conference.

The former Dortmund man has been having an excellent debut season in Madrid, scoring 20 times and providing nine assists in 33 appearances across all competitions.

Real Madrid's Jude Bellingham reacts after sustaining an injury on November 5, 2023© Reuters

However, his form has tapered off recently, with only three goals since January. When asked about this, he attributed it to the ankle injury he suffered against Girona in early February.

While playing abroad at such a young age is fairly uncommon for English prospects, the midfielder noted that his rapid development in recent years might not have been achievable had he opted to join a Premier League club in 2020 instead of moving to Dortmund.

He explained: "I was at Dortmund for three years, I took a path that's a bit unfamiliar for players in England. It's different but you learn a lot and I take a lot back to the national team.

"But I am grateful for the opportunities I've been given in European football. I think maybe they wouldn't be as accessible in England. Thanks to my parents and the people around me. I think playing abroad is definitely a good idea for young players and hopefully I'm showing that."

Los Blancos are currently leading the La Liga standings by eight points over their arch-nemeses Barcelona, who they will face in the final El Clasico of the 2023-24 season this Sunday at the Santiago Bernabeu.

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Manchester City's Kyle Walker celebrates after the match on September 16, 2023
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Group A

4Man Utd61144

Group B


Group C

QReal Madrid660018
4Union Berlin60242

Group D

QReal Sociedad633012
QInter Milan633012

Group E


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3AC Milan62228

Group G

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QRB Leipzig640212
3Young Boys61144
4Red Star60151

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