Football News: How Jude Bellingham became the hottest midfielder in world football

Europe's big names are circling the teenager, who is tipped to start for England at the World Cup, after his success at Borussia Dortmund


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Jude Bellingham is one of the most coveted players in the world and his stock is only rising CREDIT: Ralf Treese/Getty Images

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Jude Bellingham has spoken about his desire to “push the boundaries of my own potential and talent” as the most talked about young midfielder in European football prepares to face Manchester City in the Champions League.


In a rare interview – Bellingham only turned 19 in June – he also discussed why he decided to move to Borussia Dortmund in 2020, choosing them over Manchester United and the quality he possesses that is debated as much as his ability: his preternatural maturity.


It comes as Dortmund know that the biggest clubs are now circling in the hope of signing Bellingham next summer when he is expected to become a £100million plus player – the most expensive ever Englishman and the biggest fee ever paid for a midfielder in world football.


City want to be in that conversation, and will not sit by and let him join a rival, as do Liverpool – who had been regarded as the early front-runners but appear to be losing ground – while Real Madrid have made their play and have sold the vision of Bellingham being part of a new, young midfield triumvirate with Aurelien Tchouameni and Eduardo Camavinga. He may be a very different player from Luka Modric but he is also regarded as the Croatian’s successor in terms of influence. And that is the highest of compliments.


Pep Guardiola chose his words carefully, but tellingly: “I said when he was 17, it wasn’t just the quality, it was about he was shouting, leading, kicking, and going to the referee. I thought this guy was something special in terms of the mentality.

“Now, at 19 years old, he is already one the captains of the team, and when that happens at 19 years old it is quite impressive. The quality and skills, everyone knows it, but it’s not just about that. It’s about the whole package. He’s really good.

“He’s already in the national team playing with them at 19. That is quite impressive. We know the quality he has but we will try to impose our quality on the game and win the game.”


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There is more. Dortmund coach Edin Terzic, who was Slaven Bilic’s assistant at West Ham United, has a clear idea of what he feels Bellingham can achieve. “For the English in the next 10 years not only Jude but Declan Rice, who I was fortunate to work with at West Ham, will dominate the midfield positions for their national team. They are both very talented players,” Terzic said ahead of the Group G tie.


Bellingham will start alongside Rice at the World Cup – particularly with Kalvin Phillips injured – and is well aware of the growing focus on him and his future. “I'm still 19, [and] I've won maybe one trophy in my career, and it's not enough, really. I want to win way more, and I want to continue to push the boundaries of my own potential and talent,” Bellingham said in the interview with Uefa.com.


The likes of City – who may help finance the deal by allowing Bernardo Silva to leave next summer - Real and Liverpool will have taken note especially as they are clearly more likely to be in for silverware than Dortmund who are becoming increasingly dependent on Bellingham.

His importance was highlighted again last week when he was given a rare rest in the German Cup tie against Hannover but was turned to by Terzic as the Bundesliga club were struggling to overcome their lower league opposition.


Bellingham, who had previously played every minute of Dortmund’s season, came on, won a penalty, grabbed the ball and hammered it into the net to calm nerves and help secure a 2-0 win and with it a place in the last-16.


It is why Terzic has named Bellingham as Dortmund’s ‘third captain’ – after the hugely experienced Mats Hummels and Marco Reus who are both in their 30s and seasoned German internationals.


Think about that for a moment. Bellingham has captained the second biggest team in German, is still a teenager and moved to the club from Birmingham City just two years ago.

Terzic said: “Borussia Dortmund is well known for developing talent but Jude, at the age of 19, he’s like the oldest 19-year-old I’ve ever seen. On and off the pitch we’re really happy he’s with us.


“It’s a win-win situation. We are benefitting from having him and I think he appreciates that Borussia Dortmund is the right place for his development. Jude will have a big impact not only against City but for the World Cup and for the rest of our season.”


Talks have been held over Bellingham’s role. “The coach [Terzic) always says to me – and he's said to me since, in the games where Mats [Hummels] has returned and taken the armband back – ‘You don't need an armband to be a leader,’ and I've always felt that I can lead the team without having the armband. The biggest part of leadership is that you lead by example with your performance first and foremost,” Bellingham said.


And what about his maturity? “People are always saying to me how mature I am, and I don't really see it personally. When I'm in interviews and stuff, you see the side of me that's really focused on the question that you're asking me; but at home, I'm like any normal kid – I want to have conversations, I want to have a laugh, I want to mess around a little bit,” Bellingham added.


Still that maturity was evident when he decided against moving to United and joined, for £30million, Dortmund instead. “It was just the track record of the club with the young players,” Bellingham explained. “Obviously, I'd had a lot more time to actually make my decision because I had lockdown. It was tough because I knew I had a really big decision coming up and I had a lot of time to make it, and often, that's the worst and the best [thing].


“The Bundesliga started a few weeks earlier than the [English] Championship and I got to see what the team looked like. When I watched the team, I felt like there were places I could really improve Dortmund and where Dortmund could really improve me. And the more I watched the team, I thought: ‘Yeah, I've got a chance here’.” It is one he has seized.


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Post credits: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2022/10/25/how-jude-bellingham-became-hottest-midfielder-world-football/

Repost: footballnews.footballmamak.com/how-jude-bellingham-became-the-hottest-midfielder-in-world-football

Date: 26/10/2022

Location: Malaysia

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