Jude Bellingham is honored with a Golden Boy.
The Golden Boy Awards are organized by Italian media outlet Tutto Sport. The publication announced the winner of the 2023 Golden Boy on its official account on Sunday. The winner was Bellingham. “The international jury of 50 members from the most prestigious media organizations in Europe awarded him 485 points out of 500. He received exactly 97% of the vote. This is the same percentage of votes that Kylian Mbappe received when he was named Golden Boy in 2017.”
It is the third time the England player has won the award. According to global soccer publication Goal.com, Wayne Rooney became the first winner in 2004 and Raheem Sterling became the second English player to win the award in 2014. Now, nine years later, Bellingham is the third Englishman to take home the trophy.
The Golden Boy Award made its debut in 2003. It recognizes the most outstanding player under the age of 21 playing in Europe’s top leagues, and it’s a prestigious award that attracts highly respected media outlets from across the continent. While it doesn’t carry the same prestige as the Ballon d’Or, it’s a great way for fans to get an idea of who the next big thing will be.
In fact, many Golden Boy winners have gone on to become superstars. Rafael van der Vaart was the first winner in 2003, followed by Rooney, Lionel Messi, Cesc Fabregas, Sergio Aguero, and Paul Pogba. Andersson, Alessandro Pato, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan have been honored in recent years, as have Elling Holland and Gabi.
It’s a well-deserved honor. Bellingham is considered one of the hottest names in world soccer right now. He grew up in Birmingham City and left England at a young age to start a new career in Germany. The German scene was unfamiliar to an English player, but Bellingham quickly adapted.
By the 2020-21 season, when he was just 17, Bellingham was a regular in Dortmund’s starting lineup. With four goals and four assists in 46 games, including cup competitions, his ‘breakout’ performance caught the attention of the world.
Since then, he has progressed rapidly. In 2021-22, he drastically increased his offensive point production with six goals and 14 assists in 44 games, including cup competitions. In 2022-23, he was even more complete. He increased his impact defensively as well as offensively and improved his finishing, scoring 14 goals and adding six assists in 42 games, including cup competitions.
He moved to Real Madrid ahead of this season. Converted to a second striker under Carlo Ancelotti, Bellingham has had a breakout season. He has 10 goals and two assists in 11 league games so far, topping the scoring charts, and scored a multi-goal performance in the last El Clasico to help his team come from behind to win 2-1.
Bellingham also won a trophy at the last Ballon d’Or ceremony. The Copa Trophy. He beat out the likes of Jamal Musial, Pedri, and Eduardo Camabinga for the honor.