Jude Bellingham denied favourite Real Madrid shirt number due to unwritten rule, suggests Zinedine Zidane | The Sun
JUDE BELLINGHAM may have been denied his favourite number 22 by Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, claims Zinedine Zidane.
The England star had become synonymous with the number after being assigned it by Birmingham academy staff who felt Bellingham could play as a no4, no8 and a no10.
Blues even retired the number when Bellingham left to join Borussia Dortmund in 2020.
The midfielder stuck with 22 in Germany but ditched it following his £115million move to Real.
Bellingham, 20, picked number five at the Bernabeu – stating he was inspired by Zidane who also wore that number at Real Madrid.
But the Frenchman believes Perez may have prevented him from picking his favoured number 22.
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In a discussion with Lionel Messi, Zidane said: “I liked the number five, I liked everything about it, but what matters in the end is what you do on the field.”
“It was kind of weird to see someone else with the number five, seeing a central midfielder with the number five was weird.
“But do you know how that happened? Florentino, the president, didn't like players wearing high numbers like 25, 30, 35, he was from the old school.
“The number one for the goalkeeper and then up to number 11, that’s it.”
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Bellingham has hit the ground running in Spain with 13 goals in 14 games and his shirt has the most sales of any player in Europe.
He has won an incredible 11 man of the match awards for club and country and was crowned winner of the Kopa Trophy – the prize for best young player in the world.
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