'Game's gone' - Jude Bellingham has fans bemused as Real Madrid star plays unusual role in Champions League

'Game's gone' - Jude Bellingham has fans bemused as Real Madrid star plays unusual role in Champions League

WATCH NOW: Sports round-up as Real Madrid star Jude Bellingham leaves fans confused

Lewis Winter

By Lewis Winter

Published: 06/03/2024

- 21:02

The 20-year-old was given a new role by Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti

Jude Bellingham left fans confused as he played in an unfamiliar position for Real Madrid in their Champions League tie against RB Leipzig.

The England midfielder appeared to be occupying a striker role for Carlo Ancelotti as Los Blancos attempted to make it through to another quarter-final.

Bellingham has set La Liga alight since he made the move to the Bernabeu from Borussia Dortmund last summer for an initial fee of £88million.

He had scored 20 goals and registered eight assists in 30 appearances ahead of Wednesday's last-16 second leg against Leipzig.

Jude Bellingham

Jude Bellingham left fans confused with his position for Real Madrid against RB Leipzig


When the teams were announced a half before kick-off, many would have expected Bellingham to take up his usual role in midfield.

He has often played as the No 10 under Ancelotti, with Vinicius Junior the odds-on favourite to play up front.

Rodrygo and Joselu were both named among the substitutes but it was Bellingham, not Vinicius Junior, who was chosen to play as the furthest forward central player.

Real were looking to defend a 1-0 aggregate lead they picked up in the first leg in Germany three weeks ago.

It appeared to be a slightly cautious starting XI picked by former Chelsea and Everton boss Ancelotti.

And fans on social media were left surprised at the role Bellingham was asked to play.

One fan wrote: "Bro wtf is Bellingham doing in the striker role…tap in merchant."

Another put: "Why tf is Bellingham a striker and Valverde a right winger."

A third fan wrote: "Bellingham is not even a striker and yet he’s starting over Rodrygo."

While a fourth posted: "I’m confused, is Bellingham the striker?"

One fan wasn't pleased with Bellingham's performance, writing: "Bellingham asking for runs into the box. My brother, YOU ARE THE STRIKER."

Another criticised the decision from Ancelotti, posting: "Bellingham up front, the game's gone."


Jude Bellingham

Jude Bellingham played up front for Real Madrid against RB Leipzig in the Champions League


Ahead of the match, former England midfielder Owen Hargreaves heaped praise on the impact Bellingham has made since moving to Madrid.

He said on TNT Sports: "I think Jude's been ahead of the curve probably his whole life. He was probably walking when he was three months old.

"And the thing is, the way he's taken to Real Madrid has been remarkable.

"We saw what he did at Birmingham and then Borussia Dortmund but at Real Madrid to be the No 10, even when you're not a No 10, and to be a goalscorer on top of that, is remarkable.

Jude Bellingham

Jude Bellingham struggled in the first half as Real Madrid attempted to stay in the Champions League


"I think Jude said at his best in the big moments and obviously it's a big one for him tonight.

"I can't wait to see him, Jude delivers every time you watch him play. It's amazing."

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