Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has tipped Jude Bellingham to win “maybe two or three Ballon d’Ors” after his “phenomenal” impact at Real Madrid.
Bellingham, who was once linked with United, left Borussia Dortmund in the summer and completed a sensational move to Madrid for a fee that could rise to £115m.
The 20-year-old England midfielder is thriving in the Spanish capital and has scored an impressive five times and registered an assist in his first five La Liga matches.
Bellingham has also offered England fans hope for Euro 2024 in Germany after an impressive display against Scotland at Hampden Park during the international break.
READ MORE: Rio Ferdinand ‘definitely’ thinks former Man United star was ‘robbed’ of a Ballon d’Or win
Ferdinand impressed by Bellingham’s Madrid impact
Ferdinand admitted that Bellingham’s remarkable impact so far could lead to added pressure for the former Dortmund star at such a young age.
However, the ex-United defender believes Bellingham has “comfortably” proved that he is doing things at his age that the likes of Paul Scholes, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard were not doing.
“He is going to be pitted against people like Gerrard, Lampard, Scholes, and I would say right now, comfortably, that none of those players were doing anything like what he’s doing at this age and that’s the yardstick,” Ferdinand told BBC Radio 5 Live.
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“So, he can go on and win Ballon d’Ors. I’ll be very surprised if this kid doesn’t finish his career with at least one, maybe two or three Ballon d’Ors because I think he’s that good.
“There’s been players who stand out ability-wise maybe the same or a bit more than him and you could argue the case either way.
“But I don’t think there’s been, which I think is the most important part of it, that one that has come out with the mentality that this kid has to do what he’s doing.
“To go to Real Madrid and be the best player in his first four or five games is phenomenal, unheard of.”
Scholes believes Bellingham would have made United a ‘proper team‘
United reinforced in the summer under Erik ten Hag and the Red Devils did bring in the likes of Mason Mount from Chelsea and Sofyan Amrabat from Fiorentina.
But it’s hardly surprising that some United fans would be disappointed that the club didn’t open up their war chest and splash out lavishly for Bellingham’s signature.
Scholes had previously suggested that United should have signed Bellingham, despite correctly predicting that the England international would sign for Madrid.
Speaking on BT Sport (now TNT Sports) in April, he said: “I think they are contenders [to sign him].
“If you went back a couple of years, you’d have said no chance. Even back to the start of this season.
“But now I think they have to be. He would look at this team and think this is up and coming for the next few years.
“I do think he will sign for Real Madrid, I’m not sure why, but I do hope he comes here. He could make United a proper team.”