Former Barcelona player Hristo Stoichkov has revealed his opinion that Real Madrid youngster Jude Bellingham was not deserving of his recent Golden Boy award.
Bellingham has followed in the footsteps of a whole host of legends of the game, in being crowned world football’s best up-and-coming talent.
It was widely agreed that Bellingham was a deserving recipient, having followed a superb season with Borussia Dortmund with a sensational start to life at Real Madrid.
As alluded to above, though, one individual of the opinion that others in fact were more deserving of the accolade, comes in the form of Hristo Stoichkov.
Speaking in an interview with Tuttosport, as cited by Diario AS, one-time Barcelona frontman Stoichkov opened up on why he would have given his vote to one of Jamal Musiala, or Alejandro Balde:
“No (he shouldn’t have won). I don’t dispute his value. He’s one of the strongest talents in the world: he’s got a lot of class and a lot of brains. For me, he’s a mixture of Michael Laudrup, Kaka and Paul Pogba. The future is his. The next Ballon d’Or will be played with him, Mbappé and Haaland, but I’d like to know what he won in 2023 between Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid. Nothing…
“Given that Gavi, the reigning winner, was not eligible under the regulations I would have given it to (Jamal) Musiala or (Alejandro) Balde, who won La Liga and the Spanish Super Cup with Barcelona.”
Conor Laird | GSFN