Jude Bellingham - 2023 Golden Boy award winner
5 Dec 2023
20 and 159 days
29 Jun 2003
At an age of 20 years and 159 days Jude Bellingham grabbed the Golden Boy award the year 2023. Not only did he win the award, he was also the the player who won with the biggest point margin to the second placed player ever. At the time of winning the award, the Englishman played for Real Madrid.
His early years
Jude Bellingham was born on the 29th of June 2003 in the English town Stourbridge, about 19 kilometers west of Birmingham. He also started to play football in Stourbridge's football team but already in 2010 he made a move to Birmingham City. He played all his child and youth career in Birmingham City. He made his competitve game debut for the first team in a the EFL Cup against Portsmouth on the 6th of August 2019 at an age of only 16 years and 38 days.
Moving to Germany to join Borussia Dortmund
In 2020, after having played 41 games for Birmingham City it was time for a move to a bigger club. Many clubs were after his signature, for example did Manchester United place a bid on him that was turned down, but it was instead the German Bundeliga club Borussia Dortmund that won the race.
He debuted for Borussia Dortmund in a competetive game at the age of 17 years in a German cup game against Duisburg, and also scored in that game. Despite his young age he became starting regular already in his first season in Germany and was so basically all his time during his three seasons in Dortmund. In total he played 92 games Borussia Dortmund and scored 12 goals, but in 2023 it was time to leave Dortmund.
Moving to Spain and Real Madrid
Ones again Jude Bellingham rejected all the Premier League clubs and instead signed for the Spanish giant Real Madrid. On the 14th of June he officially became a Real Madrid player, and the reported fee Real paid Dortmund was 103 million euro, plus 30% extra performance related fees making the total fee about 134 million euro.
Real Madrid had just lost their star striker Karim Benzema but Bellingham was not exactly seen as a direct replacement for him, considering Bellingham is a midfielder and not a striker. However, Bellingham directly started to score at a pace that made the absence of Benzema less significant. In his debut for Real, in a La Liga game against Athletic Bilbao, he scored his first goal and he also scored in the following three matches. He also scored in his first UEFA Champions League match for Real against Union Berlin.
He scored 10 goals in his first 10 games and was awarded the La Liga Player of the Month in October 2023, and already half a season into his Real Madrid spell, at the time he was awarded the Golden Boy award, he is considered to be Real's most important player.
In the English national teams
Jude Bellingham played his first match in the English national team shirt in the U15 team in a match against Turkey in December 2016. He also represented England in U16, U17 and U21 matches. He only played four U21 matches and the reason for that is that he became a regular in the senior English team already at an age of 18.
He was first called up to the senior team in November 2020 and debuted against Ireland on the 12th of November. He played his first tournament in the UEFA EURO 2020 (played in 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic). He also represented England in the FIFA World Cup 2022, and it was also their that he scored his first goal for England, in their 6-2 win against Iran. At the time he was awarded the Golden Boy price, he had represented England in 27 matches and scored 2 goals.
Records by Jude Bellingham
These are some of the records that Jude Bellingham has broken since the start of his football career.
- When he debuted for Birmingham City at an age of 16 years and 38 days he became their youngest first team player ever.
- When he played his first UEFA Champions League match for Borussia Dortmund against Lazio he was only 17 years and 113 days, making him the youngest English player ever playing in a UCL match.
- When he played his first match for England's U21 team on the 4th of December 2020 he became the youngest player ever to play in the U21 national team shirt.
- As he played his first match in the UEFA EURO 2020 tournament (actually played in 2021), in the match between England and Croatia, at an age of 17 years and 349 days he became the youngest player ever to play in a European Championship tournament.