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England cannot rely on Jude Bellingham at Euro 2024, Southgate admits

England cannot rely on Jude Bellingham at Euro 2024, Southgate admits

Gareth Southgate has admitted his England side cannot rely solely on Jude Bellingham at the European Championships. 

The Three Lions’ group stage opener against Serbia is just a week away but confidence has taken a hit following a shock 1-0 defeat to Iceland at Wembley in their final pre-tournament friendly.

However, England were missing a number of key players from their squad, most notably with Bellingham being rested after his Champions League exploits for Real Madrid.

Southgate’s squad depart for Germany on Monday on a run of just one win in their last five matches but it’s hoped Bellingham’s return to the group and link-up on the field will help inspire more decisive attacking performances.

Southgate eases pressure on Bellingham

Despite hitting 23 goals and 13 assists across all competitions during his debut season with Los Blancos, Bellingham is still just 20 years old and is only one man.

Speaking to reporters ahead of England flying out, Southgate has been keen to stress the burden of expectation will be spread throughout a talented squad, rather than solely on Bellingham’s shoulders.

“I’m sure he will but it is not his responsibility to do that,” Southgate responded (via BBC Sport) when asked if Bellingham can help boost the mood among the players.

“I’m sure he is [capable of handling the pressure] but we are not putting everything on Jude. We’ve got a lot of good players and it is a collective thing to go and try to win this tournament.

“He is, of course, a player with a fabulous mentality and will have a big impact on the whole group.”

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