Jude Bellingham of Real Madrid and England is the first Englishman to win the Ballon d’Or Kopa Trophy in 2023. The award, named after Madrid legend and Ballon d’Or winner Raymond Kopa, honors the best-performing player under the age of 21 in the world. On Monday, the former Borussia Dortmund player received the Ballon d’Or award in Paris.
Bellingham | The First ENGLISHMAN to life KOPA TROPHY
Jude Bellingham is the first Englishman to be awarded the Ballon d’Or Kopa Trophy.
The Real Madrid midfielder was named the world’s best player under the age of 21 at the Ballon d’Or ceremony in Paris on Monday, winning the trophy for the fifth time.
Other nominees included Barcelona trio Gavi, Pedri, and Alejandro Balde, Bayern Munich’s Jamal Musiala, and Manchester United’s Rasmus Hojlund, but it was Madrid and England superstar Bellingham who won the award after a spectacular year.
Bellingham, who finished second to Pedri in the 2021 edition, signed for Madrid this summer in an £88.5 million deal after rising to prominence at Borussia Dortmund and for the Three Lions.
Life in the Spanish capital couldn’t have started any better for Bellingham, who has already scored 13 goals in 13 appearances for Los Blancos.
The former Birmingham City player has scored in all three of his Champions League games this season and has 10 goals in 10 league appearances, including three braces.
In his first four league games, he scored five goals and assisted once, including a 95th-minute winner against Getafe in a 2-1 win at the Bernabeu.
The 20-year-old also scored twice in Madrid’s 2-1 comeback win over Barcelona at the end of October, his first El Clasico as Carlo Ancelotti’s side leads La Liga.
After falling behind to Xavi’s side, Bellingham equalized with a 25-yard screamer before sealing the win in the 92nd minute, capping off his incredible start with the Spanish giants.
Bellingham has also performed well for England at the international level, scoring against Iran in his first appearance at the Qatar World Cup in 2022.
Jude Bellingham | Career Records and Statement
Jude had 14 goals and seven assists for Borussia Dortmund last season, which helped earn him a move to Spain. Dortmund narrowly lost the Bundesliga title to Bayern Munich.
“I just wanted to thank everyone who helped me get to this point: Birmingham City, Dortmund, and now Madrid, the national team, and most importantly my family: my mum and dad here tonight, my brother back home,” he said to the audience. Thank you so much for your encouragement.”
“It’s been really good, I’ve been really welcomed by everyone at the club, my team-mates, the staff, everyone behind the scenes,” he said of his move to Real Madrid and his choice of Zinedine Zidane’s famous No. 5 shirt. I’m always confident in my abilities, but they were extremely helpful.
“There wasn’t much left so I had to take that. However, it’s a lot of pressure and that I wanted to take on and pay homage to one of my footballing idols.”
“It’s a great list of players, and it’s an honour to be in front of some of the best players in the world and some of the best to have ever played the game,” he said, referring to Kylian Mbappe and Gavi, two of the previous list of winners, and players such as Bernardo Silva in the crowd.
“Winning this trophy means a lot to me, but team honors are more important.” Now that I’ve got it, the most important thing is to keep going and help Madrid win trophies for many years to come.”
Real Madrid striker Vinicius Jr. received the Socrates Prize in recognition of his social activism and charitable endeavors.