Trevor Francis has insisted that a loan clause must be added to any deal that will Jude Bellingham away from Birmingham City.
The 16-year-old has become one of brightest prospects in England with Manchester United looking to bring him to Old Trafford.
Borussia Dortmund and Chelsea are also said to be interested in the teenager but it is United who have the upper hand as at now.
Francis, who played for Birmingham says he is not surprised by the clubs being linked with the player to see him continue his development but has suggested than a loan clause be inserted in any deal as he would need to player regularly.
Francis believes it is important that the player would given much playing time rather than be stuck on the bench away from St Andrew’s.
The former England international Francis told the Birmingham Mail: “Wherever Jude Bellingham goes I think he should have it written in the contract that he immediately goes back to Birmingham City to play as a loan player because he has got to improve and the only way he is going to improve is by playing regularly.
“To go to Manchester United or Chelsea or wherever it may be, with respect to the lad he is not going to be a regular in the first team and he needs to be playing regular first team football to improve as a footballer.”
Francis, who played and coached the Blues believes that it will be best of Bellingham followed his footsteps.
He added: “I think he is a very talented young man; I sound like Brian Clough saying that don’t I?
“For his age he has shown a lot of maturity when I have watched him. I think he is blessed with great individual talent.
“I am not exactly sure at this moment what his best position is but then again I think his manager would probably say exactly the same, but he is just a natural footballer who I think is capable of playing in any kind of position.”
The Red Devils are also said to be monitoring Bellingham’s junior brother for the youth side.