The heart-stopping Jude Bellingham moment that should worry England fans

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The Three Lions began their Euro 2024 campaign with a win against Serbia

Do you think if he was called Jojo Bellingham we’d all be singing Get Back this summer? On Sunday evening, Jude - that Kardashian-endorsed pillar of sorcery and composed articulation - dragged his nation by the nape of its figurative neck to all three points against Serbia, and in doing so, reaffirmed certain niggling beliefs that England as a genuine Euro 2024 contender may actually be a one-man team masquerading as something more.

It was Bellingham’s fizzing header, replete with a gritted urgency, that opened (and, indeed, closed) the scoring in Gelsenkirchen, his knack for manipulating the very fabric of space and time in his immediate vicinity that so often provided the Three Lions with an out after a superb half hour salvo hissed and waned into something much less auspicious.

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But perhaps the most arresting aspect of Jude’s performance was his majestic arrogance. The boy from Brum plays with the aura of a superstar, conducts himself in a manner befitting of a genuine, bona fide Galactico.

In no way is this a criticism; in fact, you could very probably argue that it is exactly this strain of steely self-belief that England have been sorely lacking over the past... forever. Bellingham is unafraid; not frightened to attempt the risky, undaunted by the prospect of ruffling feathers or squaring up to incandescent opponents - frothed spittle leaping from their lips, white hot hostility shooting from their eye sockets like the nuclear breath of a kaiju. In spite of it all, Jude glides coolly onwards, unbothered; a champion racing stallion at a county fair donkey show.

There are lines to be toed, however. In one particularly spicy moment on Sunday, Bellingham was seen bellowing in the face of Serbian winger Filip Kostic before delivering a robust shoulder to the chest of his opponent. In typically excitable fashion, a fitful English corner of social media was soon awash with demands to ‘hang it in the Louvre’ and other such bloodthirsty acclamations. It was a slab of pageantry that rallied and riled in the intended dosage, but it should also evoke a certain amount of caution going forward in Germany.

Aggression is good, but on a different day, with a more sensitive referee or a touch more explosivity, Bellingham could have found himself in trouble; and the very last thing that England need in this tournament is to be worrying about the prospect of their talismanic boy prince serving a preventable suspension. It is amazing how quickly these things can sour too; think David Beckham’s petulant kick out at Diego Simeone, or Wayne Rooney’s frustrated stamp on Ricardo Carvalho.

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You suspect that Bellingham has enough wherewithal to avoid that kind of red mist catastrophe, but if he is going to insist upon throwing himself full-blooded into confrontations like the one we witnessed with Kostic on Sunday, then he is always going to be taking some kind of gamble, no matter how small.

For England, it is something they must keep half an eye on, because if their 1-0 win over Serbia taught us anything, it is that should football finally come home in a little under a month’s time, Jude is very likely to be the man carrying it.

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