England midfielder Jude Bellingham voted best under-21 player in the world

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Jude Bellingham won the Kopa Award for the best under-21 player in the world. Credit: Adam Davy/John Walton/PA Wire

England international Jude Bellingham’s meteoric rise has continued as he was voted to win the Kopa Award for the best under-21 player in the world.

The Real Madrid and England midfielder, born in Stourbridge, picked up the trophy after the 20-year-old finished 18th for the main award when Lionel Messi was crowned Ballon d’Or winner for a record eighth time.

Bellingham has been on the England squad since 2020 and scored his first senior international goal during England's 6–2 win over Iran in their first game of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Bellingham and his England teammates pose for a photo before UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying match at Wembley Stadium. Credit: John Walton/PA Wire

Bellingham has scored 13 goals in 13 appearances since moving to Real Madrid in the summer, including a double to lead Real Madrid to victory in his first El Clasico against Barcelona on Saturday.

But his success was for last season – where he shone for Borussia Dortmund and England.

Bellingham represented Stourbridge as a child before playing for Birmingham City's U18 team.

After a brief spell in the Nottingham Forest U23s, he signed for Birmingham City in 2019, becoming the team's youngest first-team player.

He signed for Borussia Dortmund in 2020, and then Real Madrid in June 2023.

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