Steven Gerrard vs Jude Bellingham: Who was better?

  • Jude Bellingham battling for the Ballon d'Or after dazzling club campaign
  • Real Madrid midfielder admits seeking to emulate Steven Gerrard's career
  • Comparing the two heading into England's Euro 2024 journey
Bellingham could become a midfield great for England like Gerrard
Bellingham could become a midfield great for England like Gerrard / 90min

Steven Gerrard is one of the most influential figures in the history of English football. The number of playground screamers scored after bellowing the Liverpool legend's name only serves to paint a picture of a player who left a telling impact on both football and society as a whole.

Nowadays, however, the playground is full of budding talents raising their arms and mimicking the celebration of Jude Bellingham, who has firmly established himself as England's talisman for the foreseeable future.

Comparing the two is never going to be easy, but that's exactly what we're going to do.


Steven Gerrard
Gerrard spent decades as a star / IAN MACNICOL/GettyImages

Look, we have to start here. Gerrard enjoyed a professional career which spanned 19 years, whereas Bellingham has just finished his fifth season of senior football.

Not only was Gerrard kicking about for so long, but he spent the vast majority of his career at an incredibly high level. He was a regular starter at one of the biggest clubs in the world for close to 15 years, which is the sign of a truly special player.

Bellingham is absolutely on his way to matching that sort of accomplishment, but for now, he has to take a step back and appreciate Gerrard's accomplishments.



Games played



Goals and assists



Goals and assists-per-game

Jude Bellingham








Steven Gerrard








Despite the vast difference in games played, a quick glance at the per-game statistics show just how similar these two players are in terms of output.

Based on what he offered per game, Gerrard just about edges this one, not least because he recorded those numbers across a 19-year career. Bellingham may well get there one day, but for now, the Liverpool hero takes the crown.


Jude Bellingham
Bellingham is already at the top of the game / Marvin Ibo Guengoer - GES Sportfoto/GettyImages

2005/06 saw Gerrard rack up the individual honours across both the Premier League and Europe as the Liverpool hero firmly established himself as a key player for his beloved Reds. However, while widely recognised as a superstar, there were never any real claims that he was the best player in the world at that time.

Bellingham, who may not even yet be in his prime, has a genuine case to be considered the best player on the planet right now, which is an argument Gerrard never managed to forge for himself.

With Bellingham still only 20 years old, he could conceivably maintain this level with Real Madrid for at least another decade.


Jude Bellingham
Bellingham has already claimed the biggest prize in club football / Angel Martinez/GettyImages

Gerrard's loyalty to Liverpool was almost a fault. While he may have had a brush with the gossip column during his time at Anfield, the midfielder stood by his club even though they failed to compete domestically with the likes of Manchester United and Chelsea.

He'd end his career with a famous Champions League triumph, two FA Cups, three League Cups, one Community Shield, one UEFA Cup (now the Europa League) and one Super Cup. It's an incredible haul but one which perhaps does not do justice to his career.

As it stands, Gerrard's trophy cabinet is bigger than Bellingham's, but that won't be the case for long. The youngster already has a league title and a Champions League winner's medal, as well as two domestic cups, and if he keeps up his current momentum, he'll be adding to that haul in no time.

International career

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard left a lasting legacy on England / Stewart Kendall/Allstar/GettyImages

Part of England's Golden Generation, Gerrard's international career will always be looked back on with some form of regret, but there's no denying the role he played for his country between 2000 and 2014.

With 114 caps to his name, Gerrard sits fourth on England's all-time appearance chart and just 11 behind current record-holder Peter Shilton. To make it to over 100 caps for your country is an unfathomable honour and one which is often overlooked when reflecting on Gerrard's career.

The ludicrous state of the current international schedule means modern players have a real advantage when it comes to flying up these standings. Bellingham, who turns 21 this summer, already has 29 caps heading into Euro 2024 and, at this rate, he will eclipse the former Liverpool man's tally before he turns 30.

While Bellingham will likely end up on top, he doesn't come close to matching Gerrard's impact on the international stage just yet.


Steven Gerrard
Gerrard gets the nod for now / Tom Jenkins/GettyImages

This is a debate we'll have to come back to a few years down the line, but as it stands, it's Gerrard who edges the discussion.

Individual success carries real weight when you reflect on a player's career, but it cannot eclipse the impact of the eye test. Gerrard was a bona-fide superstar who deserves far better than seeing his lack of league titles turned into a meme on social media.

Bellingham is absolutely heading in the right direction, but his career is far too young to merit comparisons to someone like Gerrard, who perhaps summed up the situation best in a conversation with the young midfielder in March 2023.

"Let me tell you right now, you're a lot further ahead than I was at your age, so you're going in the right direction," a modest Gerrard told Bellingham, who admitted he still has "a long way to go".

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