Tuesday, July 23, 2024

England 1-0 Serbia: Euro 2024 talking points as Jude Bellingham shines

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Jude Bellingham’s relentless brilliance that saw him collect the Champions League and La Liga in a stellar first season in Spain shows no sign of slowing down at Euro 2024 with England.

A then teenage Bellingham shone on the international stage in front of a global audience at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, performing with the confidence and right measure of footballing arrogance that are the hallmarks of a truly special player.

He is not yet 21, but Bellingham acts like he was invented to play at this elite level and here he produced another headline-grabbing display as the inspiration behind England’s win.

Bellingham set England on their way with a dynamic run into the area and a flying header after 13 minutes that simply carried too much power for Serbia keeper Predrag Rajkovic.

Serbia had to resort to illegal means on several occasions to stop Bellingham in his tracks, but he is so powerful physically, also possessing the added edge in his game to relish the physical confrontations.

England’s fans also have a new hero to worship, providing a songbook of several chants in honour of the player who manager Southgate will count on so much here in Germany.

And it is an adulation Bellingham not only takes in his stride but encourages.

We witnessed his now trademark arms-outstretched celebration in front of England’s fans at one end of the Arena AufSchalke after scoring, before he ran back to the halfway line to demand more noise from those following Southgate’s team at the other end.

It is a love affair between Bellingham and England’s fans that surely will run for many years.

Bellingham’s season has been close to perfection – now England will hope he can give it a final flourish at Euro 2024.

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