The young English duo are starring together in Germany with the elder proving to be a key role model
Jude Bellingham has heaped praise upon Jadon Sancho for helping him settle at Borussia Dortmund.
The 17-year-old moved to Germany from Birmingham City over the summer and has already made seven appearances for Dortmund in all competitions this season.
The talented English duo have quickly struck up a close friendship at Dortmund, with Bellingham particularly grateful for Sancho’s support.
“Sancho is really very important to me. Not just because he comes from the same country as me or because he speaks the same language. Even more important is how he puts his arm around me, but also around the other young players…how he strengthens us in our abilities, gives us confidence,” Bellingham told Kicker.
“He’s a great role model for English players my age. To get praise and encouragement from him means a lot to me. That helps me a lot.”
Despite his young age, Bellingham is already no stranger to senior football after playing 41 games in the Championship last season for Birmingham.
Quickly making the step up to the Bundesliga and Champions League, the teenager is relishing the chance to test himself further and believes he should no longer be considered an apprentice.
“I think I’ve matured a lot both as a player and as a person in the past few months,” Bellingham said.
“Physically, the league is extremely tough, it is not for nothing that it is one of the toughest in the world. In this league, the physical and mental robustness, being able to acquire what is needed at this level was of inestimable value for my further career.
“I’m definitely not an apprentice anymore. I was simply challenged very early to learn to read a game. Offensive and defensive. That helped me a lot in retrospect.”
Dortmund currently sit third in the Bundesliga after a recent 3-0 win over Schalke and next face Zenit in Champions League action on Wednesday.
Bellingham started Dortmund’s Champions League group opener against Lazio last week but was withdrawn at half-time in a 3-1 loss to Lazio.