Jude Bellingham nets late winner as Real Madrid edge past Union Berlin

By Sports Desk September 20, 2023

Jude Bellingham’s fairytale start to his Real Madrid career continued after he fired home a stoppage-time winner against Champions League debutants Union Berlin at the Bernabeu.

The hosts, winners of the biggest prize in European football on 14 occasions, looked destined to be heading for a frustrating draw after failing to find a way past the resilient Bundesliga side.

But Bellingham converted from close range with virtually the last kick of the Group C clash to claim his sixth goal in as many matches following his summer transfer from Borussia Dortmund, and land all three points for Carlo Ancelotti’s side.

Los Blancos arrived for their opening Champions League fixture with a 100 per cent record in LaLiga to see them sit two points clear of rivals Barcelona after five matches.

Bellingham has been key to their strong start and the 20-year-old – the sixth English player after Laurie Cunningham, Steve McManaman, David Beckham, Michael Owen and Jonathan Woodgate to feature for Real in the European Cup – was again central to his side’s pursuit of a win under the lights.

After just three minutes it was Bellingham’s cross which Joselu nodded straight into the arms of Frederik Ronnow – the first of a hat-trick of headers he was unable to score during a tepid opening period.

Following the interval, Joselu then saw a header tipped on to the post by Ronnow.

Ancelotti’s men were starting to up the ante, and Rodrygo had two good opportunities to hand his side the lead – first drawing a good save from Ronnow, and then blasting an effort off the woodwork.

But as the clock ticked down, Real were staring down the barrel of a disappointing point with Ancelotti’s annoyance etched all over his face. That was until Bellingham saved the night.

Following Real’s 16th corner of a one-sided contest, Federico Valverde’s shot from the edge of the area was blocked, before falling perfectly into the path of Bellingham.

The unmarked England international could not miss as he prodded home from a little more than a yard out before wheeling away in celebration and lapping up the adulation of the adoring home crowd.

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