Chelsea legend Ashley Cole has joined the long list of Jude Bellingham admirers.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Cole paid tribute to the Borussia Dortmund’s sterling World Cup debut for England against Iran on Monday.

It was a performance that very few will forget in a while.

Especially the 19-year-old, who was welcomed onto the grandest footballing stage with a warm embrace.

Photo by Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

He didn’t give Iran quite the same affection.

Instead, Bellingham boxed and bruised his opponents, leaving them battered on the surface by full-time.

Even the toughest of adversaries would’ve struggled to contain the teenager’s power in and out of possession.

 Iran may have asked to look at Bellingham’s birth certificate after the game, such was his fully-established exhibition.

“Just mature. Showed no fear, always willing to get on the ball and show his qualities. I think he showed his all-round play, he can win tackles, regain the ball, he was controlled in his passing and variety in his passing,” said the former Chelsea defender Cole.

“He was box-to-box and of course he showed great maturity with a great header to score. I think he’s coming into his own now.”

Boehly eyes Bellingham and Rice

If this is coming into his own now, it’s scary to think what Bellingham will be like in five-, or ten-years’ time.

If Todd Boehly has anything to say about it, the Dortmund midfielder will be the staple of Stamford Bridge.

Boehly is reportedly planning on holding talks with the England international and his excellent compatriot Declan Rice soon.

Photo by Berengui/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Permitted the Chelsea owner can somehow manage to swoop the pair simultaneously, it will arguably be the biggest coop in modern footballing history.

Signing Rice and Bellingham may also smash several records for transfer fees and signing on clauses.

The American business has the bank to fund extravagant actions in the market, but will this be a step too far?

Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.