Jude Bellingham is wanted by Europe's top clubs because he is "an outstanding talent" who has proved he is the real deal, according to Borussia Dortmund coach Edin Terzic.
Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard, who wants Bellingham to join the Reds, spoke of how Bellingham should return home to England and develop his game.
"There's still growth in him, and he can evolve, and I think staying in England until a certain age until he hits his peak years is very important for the boy now," Gerrard said on BT Sport.
While Gerrard said he would love to take Bellingham out for dinner and sell the prospect of Liverpool to him, Terzic wants the teenager to stay where he is, and considers him further advanced than a player at any developmental stage.
"I don't think there's a player that's been more speculated about in our squad right now than Jude has been in the last few weeks and months," Terzic said.
"Because he's an outstanding talent; because he is, I think, past that talent status, even though he's only 19."
England international Bellingham scored Dortmund's opener as they beat Augsburg 4-3 on Sunday, and BVB go to Mainz on Wednesday seeking another three points to nudge them deeper into the battle for Champions League places.
The finish pic.twitter.com/Qq2X40F026
— Borussia Dortmund (@BlackYellow) January 24, 2023
Bellingham is suspended for the Mainz game, with the teenager's absence a major blow.
This is his third season of being a regular in the Dortmund midfield, with his growing maturity and impact on the field all too obvious to Terzic. Bellingham has nine goals already this season, a personal best for a campaign.
"He is an extremely important player for us, who has now scored the first goal in a game for us again, who was extremely important in both attack and defence on Sunday," Terzic said.
"And of course we will miss him tomorrow. But that's the job of a good squad.
"We will now think carefully about how we can compensate this absence for tomorrow. We are sure that Jude will play a leading role again in the game in Leverkusen on Sunday. And tomorrow we will do the job without him."
Terzic said Dortmund are looking "from day to day" at how Sebastien Haller comes on, as the former Ajax man continues his comeback after treatment for testicular cancer.
The French striker came off the bench on Sunday, and Terzic said: "We are just noticing that he is getting better and better from day to day. He feels better and better, he has found his rhythm again, and we just hope that we can increase the workload bit by bit.
"To what extent that will be enough for the starting line-up, whether that will be the case tomorrow or on Sunday or next week, we will see, but we are sure that he will play an important role again tomorrow."