Chosen by Kim Kardashian and Loved by Fans, Bellingham Fires England to Win over Serbia at Euros

England's midfielder #10 Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C football match between Serbia and England at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen on June 16, 2024. (AFP)
England's midfielder #10 Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C football match between Serbia and England at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen on June 16, 2024. (AFP)
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Chosen by Kim Kardashian and Loved by Fans, Bellingham Fires England to Win over Serbia at Euros

England's midfielder #10 Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C football match between Serbia and England at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen on June 16, 2024. (AFP)
England's midfielder #10 Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring his team's first goal during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C football match between Serbia and England at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen on June 16, 2024. (AFP)

Jude Bellingham is the star of Kim Kardashian’s male underwear range, England icon David Beckham mimics his trademark goal celebration, and a Beatles classic has become his anthem as adoring fans serenade him with “Hey Jude” when he’s on the field.

Bellingham, it seems, can do no wrong.

No surprise then that he was the player to get England off to a winning start at the European Championship with a first-half goal to beat Serbia 1-0 in Gelsenkirchen on Sunday.

“Every game I feel like I can make an impact, I feel like I can decide games,” the Real Madrid star said. “I really enjoy playing football so when I go out there, I play with a fearlessness because I love doing it so much. It is a release for me.”

Wearing the No. 10 jersey once adorned by Wayne Rooney, the midfielder stooped to head in Bukayo Saka’s cross in the 13th minute. Bellingham raced away, arms outstretched in a pose Madrid fans have grown to love and Beckham has replicated on social media in tribute to a player who doesn’t turn 21 until later this month.

Bellingham has already done his talking on the field after a spectacular debut season at Madrid where he scored 23 goals, won the Spanish title and the Champions League.

He is also making a splash off of it.

Like Beckham, his appeal goes far beyond soccer. Presumably that was what Kardashian knew after Bellingham was chosen to front the menswear range of her SKIMS underwear. He’s also the star of an advertising campaign for sportswear giant Adidas, which features Beckham, who is just another of Bellingham’s many fans.

So much, so soon for someone so young could be seen as a cause for concern.

But Bellingham is not your average player.

“He writes his own script,” England manager Gareth Southgate said.

Having already played at the last Euros and the World Cup in 2022, Bellingham is the first European player to appear at three major international tournaments before the age of 21, according to statistician, Opta.

His goal was certainly the story of this game - sending England to the top of Group C after Denmark drew 1-1 with Slovenia. Christian Eriksen scored for the Danes - three years after suffering a cardiac arrest on the field at the last Euros.

England plays Denmark in Frankfurt on Thursday.

Southgate's team might have gone into that match on the back of a bigger margin of victory, with Harry Kane coming close to scoring in the second half when Serbia goalkeeper Predrag Rajkovic pushed his far post header onto the underside of the bar.

England was a beaten finalist at the last Euros, losing on penalties to Italy in the final three years ago. It is one of the favorites to go one better this time around.

But off-field issues overshadowed the buildup to the game against Serbia, which had been deemed high risk due to concerns about violence between rival supporters. Some of those fears were realized when police rushed to separate brawling fans in Gelsenkirchen earlier in the day.

Social media footage showed men throwing chairs at each other outside a restaurant festooned with Serbian flags in the city.

Inside the stadium there were boos during the anthems.

England fans were soon celebrating once the game got underway after Bellingham’s decisive moment.

And he’s got no problem with the song supporters have attached to him.

“I listen to the Beatles a lot. My style of music is a bit old so that is right up my street,” he said.

Over in Hamburg, Dutch fans were also partying and turned the city into a sea of orange. The Netherlands secured a come-from-behind 2-1 win against Poland in Group D thanks to Wout Weghorst’s late goal.



Iconic Sites Hosting Paris Olympics Events

France's paralympian cyclist Florian Jouanny poses at the Bir-Hakeim Bridge ahead of the Paris Olympics and Paralympics. Joël SAGET / AFP
France's paralympian cyclist Florian Jouanny poses at the Bir-Hakeim Bridge ahead of the Paris Olympics and Paralympics. Joël SAGET / AFP
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Iconic Sites Hosting Paris Olympics Events

France's paralympian cyclist Florian Jouanny poses at the Bir-Hakeim Bridge ahead of the Paris Olympics and Paralympics. Joël SAGET / AFP
France's paralympian cyclist Florian Jouanny poses at the Bir-Hakeim Bridge ahead of the Paris Olympics and Paralympics. Joël SAGET / AFP

The Paris Olympics have been designed to showcase the City of Light in all its splendor, with events taking place at iconic locations.
AFP looks at five sites set to wow ticket-holders -- and a global TV audience of billions -- during the 17-day extravaganza starting on July 26:
Eiffel Tower
The most famous of the Paris landmarks, the Eiffel Tower, will welcome beach volleyball.
The action will take place in a temporary venue near the foot of the "Iron Lady".
Next door, the Champs de Mars park at the foot of the tower will host judo and wrestling.
Reviled by some Parisians when it was unveiled in 1889 for the World Fair by engineer Gustave Eiffel, the Eiffel Tower has become the capital's symbol.
Besides being one of the world's top tourist attractions, pulling in seven million visitors a year, it is also a working telecoms tower, used for radio and TV transmissions.
Winners at the Paris Games will all go home with a small part of the iron colossus. Each medal will contain an 18g crumb of original iron, removed during renovations, melted down and reforged.
Grand Palais
Fencing and taekwondo battles will take place in the opulent setting of the Grand Palais exhibition hall, a glass-and-steel masterpiece created for the World Fair of 1900.
Its distinctive feature is its glass domed roof, the largest of its kind in Europe, which covers a cavernous exhibition space of 13,500 square meters.
During World War I, the Grand Palais put its art collection in storage and converted its galleries into a military hospital where soldiers were patched up before returning to the trenches.
In the 21st century, the airy nave has hosted giant installations commissioned from some of the world's leading artists.
It has also been flooded to make the biggest ice rink in the world.
Place de la Concorde
The vast, paved square at the foot of the Champs-Elysees avenue, where heads rolled (literally) during the French Revolution, will serve as an urban sports hub.
Skateboarding, 3x3 basketball, BMX freestyle and, in its first Games appearance, breakdancing, will all take place on the elegant square by the Seine.
Its harmonious name conceals a bloody past. King Louis XVI and his wife Marie-Antoinette were guillotined there in 1793 during the Reign of Terror that followed the 1789 French Revolution.
The largest square in Paris is defined by its huge gold obelisk, one of a pair originally erected by Ramses II outside the temple in Luxor in Egypt. It was gifted to Paris in 1830.
Palace of Versailles
Dressage, showjumping and equestrian cross country will take place in the park of Versailles Palace, some 20 kilometers from Paris. It also features on the marathon circuit and hosts pentathlon events.
In the 17th century, "the Sun King" Louis XIV transformed Versailles into a home of French royalty, where he resided with around 10,000 staff.
The vast gardens include a mile-long canal that once hosted opulent parties.
It has been a world heritage site since 1979 and is a firm favorite on the Paris tourist trail.
Marseille
The Olympics are spreading beyond the capital.
Sailing contests will take place in the Mediterranean city of Marseille, France's boisterous second city, better known as the home of Olympique Marseille football team.
Over 300 sailors from across the world will battle it out on the sapphire Mediterranean waters off the city. A marina has been built along the scenic Corniche coastal road heading southeast out of the city.
It's unlikely they'll have the sometimes ferocious mistral wind in their sails. It usually blows in winter and spring.
Marseille, which will also host 10 football matches, was where the Olympic torch landed in France on May 8 on its relay to Paris.