Sunday, June 16, 2024

Alan Shearer backs Jude Bellingham to fire England to Euro 2024 glory

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Former England captain Alan Shearer says Jude Bellingham has the X-factor to help his country win Euro 2024.

Bellingham has enjoyed a ‘Roy of the Rovers’ existence since his move to Real Madrid last summer, scoring 19 goals in 27 games to help lead the Spanish giants to another LaLiga title.

He has also netted four times and added four assists as Madrid close in on a 15th European Cup success when they face Borussia Dortmund at Wembley next month.

The 20-year-old will then join up with Gareth Southgate’s side as they plot European Championship glory in Germany.

Shearer believes Bellingham could be the one who helps England over the line.

“He could be the X-factor when you look at what he has achieved,” Shearer told the PA news agency.

“His numbers at Real Madrid this season, his goals and assists, it is just not easy what he has done.

“When you think of going to the might of Real Madrid and playing in that stadium and the pressure you are under for someone so young, you have to use that as an advantage.

“There is no doubt playing for England in a Euros will not phase him in the slightest, you can tell how level-headed he is. He will play a huge part in what England do.”

Jude Bellingham is hoping to lead England to a first major trophy since 1966 (John Walton/PA)

With Bellingham setting Europe alight, Harry Kane breaking scoring records for Bayern Munich, Phil Foden potentially helping Manchester City to a double and Bukayo Saka being the standout player for Arsenal, boss Gareth Southgate has one of the most talented squads at the tournament.

Shearer believes if England are ever going to win a major tournament this will be the year.

“I firmly believe that England should have as good a chance as we have ever had, especially with our front six players,” he added.

“We have a great chance of winning the tournament, definitely. It has been such a long time, they nearly got there last time at Wembley against Italy but lost on penalties.

“It is a chance for these boys to put their history and be iconic like the boys of 66 were.

Shearer thinks Newcastle's Anthony Gordon has done enough to be on the plane
Shearer thinks Newcastle winger Anthony Gordon has done enough to be on the plane (Tim Markland/PA)

“That is what is at stake for themselves so let’s hope they go out and do that. England have got to somehow find a way. If there is going to be a year, this should be it.”

Despite the plethora of attacking talent, Shearer believes Newcastle winger Anthony Gordon has done enough to get on the plane.

Gordon, who made his national-team debut in the March internationals, has been a key player for the Magpies.

“I think he has put himself ahead of other players who are in a similar position to him,” former Newcastle striker Shearer said.

“There are so many gifted players but I think he has done enough. He has been Newcastle’s best player this season.

Alan Shearer was speaking as part of his work with Topps, who are the official cards and stickers supplier for UEFA EURO 2024
Alan Shearer was speaking as part of his work with Topps, who are the official cards and stickers supplier for UEFA EURO 2024 (Topps handout/PA)

“He has been reliable in terms of performance and getting into the team. In my mind, he has done enough.”

If England do win the Euros, people who have filled in the Topps’ UEFA Euro 2024 sticker collection will have a valuable piece of memorabilia.

Shearer remembers the time when he was on a sticker and how he had to splash the cash to help fill his son’s book in the 1990s.

“I remember it costing me a fortune and ringing up people to complete the collection for my son, he was one of the lucky ones who got the full album,” he said.

“Especially before every tournament there always seems to be a bit of a phenomenon about who can get what and who can fill their books.”

:: Alan Shearer was speaking as part of his work with Topps, who are the official cards and stickers supplier for UEFA Euro 2024. Collectibles are available now at topps.com or from all good retailers.

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