Why Jude Bellingham will always remember Portsmouth after joining Borussia Dortmund from Birmingham

He was named on the visitors' team-sheet among a crop of youngsters that the vast majority inside Fratton Park had never heard of.

Tuesday, 21st July 2020, 5:30 pm

But less than a year later after being handed his debut against Pompey, Jude Bellingham has made one of the most high-profile switches of the summer.

The 17-year-old has joined Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund from Birmingham for a fee that could rise to more than £30m.

Surely even the best fortune-tellers in the world couldn't have predicted such a move when Bellingham made his senior bow against Kenny Jackett's side in the Carabao Cup first round on August 6, 2019.

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Brum boss Pep Clotet made wholesale changes following his side's 1-0 victory over Brentford on the opening day of the Championship campaign three days earlier, handing opportunities to fledging talents at St Andrew’s.

Bellingham was named in Birmingham's line-up – which made him the youngest player in the club's history.

Aged 16 years and 39 days, he surpassed the record set by Trevor Francis in 1970.

Also in the visitors' starting XI that evening was a certain Steve Seddon. He would, of course, join Pompey on loan in January and become a fans' favourite.

Pompey's Marcus Harness of Portsmouth battles for the ball with Jude Bellingham on his Birmingham debut at Fratton Park. Picture: Dan Istitene/Getty Images

The hosts' experience proved far too much for the midlands outfit in the clash, however.

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Bellingham was handed an 81st-minute runout. He was fairly quiet throughout except for an early shot on the spin that was deflected for a corner.

Nevertheless, he'd continue to play a prominent part at St Andrew's throughout the season.

To date, he has scored four goals in 43 outings ahead of Birmingham's final game of the season against Derby County on Wednesday night.

Clearly punching above his weight as a teenager against former Premier League players and internationals on a weekly basis in the second tier, Bellingham has now earned himself a switch to Dortmund.

Bigger and better things are highly likely to come from the England under-17 international and his progress will be kept tabs on by many.

But one memory that will never escape him is that his senior debut arrived against Pompey at Fratton Park.