Jude Bellingham’s first season at Real Madrid has been nothing short of spectacular. It culminated in a treble that included La Liga, the Champions League, and the Spanish Super Cup. However, the 20-year-old midfielder’s journey was far from easy; Bellingham played through a persistent shoulder injury for much of the campaign.

Bellingham dislocated his shoulder during a 0-0 draw with Rayo Vallecano in November. The initial recovery period saw him miss only two to three weeks. However, the injury lingered, requiring him to wear a heavy brace and play through significant discomfort. According to Cadena SER, surgery is a possibility to address the ongoing issue, although it is an option that all parties are keen to avoid.

Despite the injury, the Englishman made 47 appearances in all competitions, scoring 23 goals and playing a pivotal role in Real Madrid‘s treble-winning season. His ability to perform at such a high level while managing pain is a testament to his resilience and determination.

Injury could force Bellingham out of action for several months

Bellingham’s shoulder injury has not fully healed, and his participation in Euro 2024 could exacerbate the problem. If the injury persists, surgery may become unavoidable, potentially sidelining him for up to three months. This would mean missing the entire pre-season and the start of the 2024-25 campaign. It would be a significant setback for both the player and Carlo Ancelotti.

Medical experts have indicated that, while “conservative treatment” is the first course of action, a dislocated shoulder often requires surgical intervention if pain and instability continue. Bellingham’s condition has been monitored closely, with Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti acknowledging the possibility of surgery if the shoulder does not improve.

Big decisions ahead for all parties

Throughout the season, Bellingham has struggled with his shoulder injury, especially noticeable before the Champions League final. Despite the pain, he continued to deliver outstanding performances, helping Los Blancos secure major trophies. His situation highlights the challenges athletes face when balancing the desire to compete with the need to manage serious injuries.

The midfielder’s commitment to his team and his ability to perform under such circumstances have not gone unnoticed. He acknowledged the difficulties he faced during the season but also expressed that the success made all the hardships worthwhile. “I’ve always dreamed of playing in these games,” he told TNT Sports. “When it gets hard at times you start to wonder if it’s all worth it – but nights like tonight make it all worth it.”

As Bellingham prepares to join the England squad for Euro 2024, his fitness remains a concern. He missed a friendly against Bosnia and Herzegovina following Real Madrid’s Champions League triumph. Nonetheless, he is expected to be a key player for England in the tournament. The hope is that he can manage his condition throughout the competition without the need for immediate surgery.

Looking ahead, Real Madrid and Bellingham will need to weigh the long-term benefits of surgical intervention against the short-term impact on his availability. If surgery is required, it could provide a permanent solution to his shoulder issues, ensuring he returns to full fitness for future seasons.