‘For such a young kid, he plays WAY beyond his years’: Roy Keane tips Jude Bellingham to become England’s breakthrough star at the World Cup and insists he would ‘love’ the Dortmund man to flourish in Qatar
Roy Keane piled on the praise for England starlet Jude Bellingham and hopes he can be the Three Lions’ breakout star at the Qatar World Cup.
The Irish legend hailed the Borussia Dortmund midfielder’s maturity ‘beyond his years’ and his athleticism before predicting a starring role for Gareth Southgate’s side at the tournament.
The 19-year-old goes into the World Cup – which he is almost certainly going to be picked for – on the back of a brilliant start to the 2022-23 campaign, with eight goals and two assists in 18 games across all competitions for the Bundesliga side.
Roy Keane has topped Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham to have breakthrough World Cup
‘I would love to see Jude Bellingham have a good tournament,’ claimed Roy Keane, who will be part of ITV’s team of pundits for the competition.
‘For such a young kid, he plays way beyond his years, looks a good athlete and is mature.
‘He’s getting a good run of games now for Borussia Dortmund and recently started for England against Germany. So, I hope he takes that momentum into the World Cup.’
The former Ireland midfielder will be part of ITV’s coverage of the tournament in Qatar
Bellingham has become one of his country’s most important figures in the middle of the park of late, often featuring alongside West Ham captain Declan Rice.
In fact Bellingham has featured in seven of England’s eight games in 2022, only once playing fewer than 60 minutes in that time, so crucial is he to his manager’s plans.
And an omission from Southgate’s preferred starting XI at football’s greatest competition will surely be met with outcry from football fans.
The 19-year-old midfielder has played in seven of his country’s eight games so far in 2022
Since his arrival at Dortmund in 2020 as a 17-year-old, the former Birmingham midfielder has notched an impressive 18 goals and 22 assists in 108 games.
But Keane’s praise for the youngster does not translate into a similar level of confidence in England’s prospects at the tournament.
‘England will have no problem getting out of the group, they’ll be far too strong,’ Keane added.
‘[There is] huge pressure on Harry Kane to produce and I still worry about England defensively and the goalkeeper.’
But Keane does not anticipate Gareth Southgate’s side winning the competition this winter