Real Madrid have announced the signing of Jude Bellingham from Borussia Dortmund, with the Spanish side having won the race for one of Europe’s most coveted talents.
Bellingham has signed a long-term contract at the Bernabeu and will become the sixth Englishman to represent Real Madrid, who have agreed a fee worth an initial €100m for the teenager.
Bellingham’s move comes after establishing himself as one of world football’s most exciting talents, with the midfielder named as the Bundesliga’s Player of the Season after an outstanding 2022/23 campaign.
The 19-year-old will form part of an exciting midfield crop in Carlo Ancelotti’s squad, alongside the likes of Federico Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, Aurélien Tchouaméni and veteran duo Luka Modric and Toni Kroos.
— Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 (@realmadriden) June 14, 2023
Following the official announcement of Bellingham’s move to Madrid, we’ve looked at some of the statistics that made the midfielder so in demand.
Minutes played – 3,558 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Bellingham made 42 appearances in all competitions for Borussia Dortmund in 2022/23 and no player played more minutes in Edin Terzić’s squad.
Bellingham missed just three league fixtures as Dortmund missed out on the title in agonising fashion, with a knee issue keeping the teenager out of the final day draw with Mainz that allowed Bayern Munich to snatch the Bundesliga on goal difference.
How different things could have been had Bellingham been fit enough to feature.
Goals – 14 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Bellingham had the best goalscoring season of his career last term with 14 goals in all competitions. The midfielder’s return equalled his entire total from the previous three seasons combined, with Bellingham scoring eight league goals, two in the DFB-Pokal and four in the Champions League.
He became the just the third teenager to score in four consecutive Champions League appearances, after Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé.
Jude Bellingham has experience way beyond his years 💫 pic.twitter.com/CbfvzQPbZO
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) June 14, 2023
Goals and assists – 20 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Bellingham was directly involved in more goals than any other Dortmund team-mate in 2022/23, having returned 20 goal involvements in all competitions.
The England international added six assists to his 14 goals, putting him ahead of Raphaël Guerreiro (19) and Julian Brandt (19) as the most productive player at the Westfalenstadion.
Touches – 3,033 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Bellingham’s brilliance is in his all-action approach to the game and the midfielder was at the hub of Dortmund’s campaign, leading his team-mates for touches.
The 19-year-old spent most of the campaign in a box-to-box role, but showed versatility to operate in more defensive and advanced positions on occasion.
Successful take-ons 106 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Bellingham also led his team-mates for successful take-ons (106) last season and ranked alongside Bayer Leverkusen’s Florian Wirtz for the most successful dribbles (2.8) per game in the Bundesliga.
His 88 completed take-ons were a league leading total in Germany’s top flight last season, while no central midfielder in Europe’s big five leagues could match Bellingham’s total. It is the sort of drive and dynamism that Real Madrid will hope can reenergise their midfield next season.
88 – Jude Bellingham completed 88 take-ons in the Bundesliga last season, the most by any central midfielder across Europe’s big five leagues in 2022-23. Dynamic. pic.twitter.com/yMsq37IRyO
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 14, 2023
Unsurprisingly, Bellingham also led his team-mates for progressive carries with a huge 384 across the course of the campaign. No midfielder in the Bundesliga managed more.
Tackles – 98 (Borussia Dortmund rank – 1st)
Far from restricted to just attacking influence, Bellingham was one of the most prolific ball-winners in the Bundesliga last season. He made 98 tackles in all competitions, with 76 of those coming in league action.
Just five players managed more tackles in the Bundesliga last season, while Bellingham’s intelligence in the press and tenacity was a huge part of Edin Terzić’s approach when defending from the front. Bellingham won possession in the final third (34) more than any other team-mate.
How does Bellingham compare to his positional peers?
Bellingham’s evolution from player of promise to fully fledged star appeared to accelerate during a campaign that saw the midfielder named as Bundesliga’s Player of the Season.
The leader on numerous metrics at Borussia Dortmund, the statistics make for even more impressive reading when assessing Bellingham against his positional peers in Europe’s top five leagues.
Bellingham’s all-action influence is evident on both attacking, progressive and defensive metrics. He ranked in the 93rd percentile of central midfielders or higher for non-penalty goals, non-penalty xG, shots and shot-creating actions per 90 minutes in 2022/23.
— 433 (@433) May 29, 2023
While Bellingham’s pass completion (81.7%) ranked him below average (45th percentile), he ranked in 94th percentile for progressive passes to evidence there is often ambition to his use of the ball.
Bellingham is a numbers machine when it comes to carrying the ball in possession, ranking in the 92nd percentile for progressive carries, 98th for touches in the opposition penalty box and 99th for successful take-ons.
With a high ranking for blocks (93rd percentile) and encouraging percentile numbers for tackles (73), interceptions (71) and aerials won (71) there’s an argument that Bellingham, at 19, is already among the most well-rounded midfielders in Europe.
With room and time to get even better, Real Madrid’s midfield looks well placed to dominate for seasons to come.