Daily Mirror


James hoping to follow in footsteps of Bellingham as teen says: Let’s see how far I can go under boss Wayne


THE club which spawned Jude Bellingham has another boy wonder on the march.

And Birmingham teenager Jordan James believes that new manager Wayne Rooney is just the man to help him fulfil his potential.

James, 19, said: “He has helped me a lot already in a month.

“It’s brilliant under a manager who has played a lot of games at the top level.

“That’s where I want to get to so to be able to learn from him, all I can do is listen. When I was younger, I watched all of his games, and watched him play, and what a player he was.

“I can only dream of having a career like his but I’m on a journey of my own and hopefully I can get there.”

James (above) made an impact just three minutes after coming off the bench, scoring the winner and delivering a first victory to Rooney in his sixth game in charge at St Andrew’s.

The Welshman takes a step back from comparison with England and Real Madrid star Bellingham but is confident he can make a mark for club and country, with Rooney demanding a more exciting, attackmind­ed style. “Jude has done brilliantl­y,” said James. “He is at the top now, one of the best players in the world, and that doesn’t just come to him.

“But I just focus on myself. I’m in a very good place, playing internatio­nally benefits me a lot.

“Being on that world stage is where I want to get to so hopefully being able to qualify for the Euros will be massive for me and then see where it takes me.”

The sighs of relief at the final whistle told a story of a poor first half from Birmingham, who went in at half-time level after Juninho Bacuna’s strike cancelled out the opener from George Byers.

Then James made his mark, rounding keeper Cameron Dawson for the winning goal (inset, left). He said: “Being told I wasn’t in the team, I knew when I came on to that pitch that I needed to change the game and that’s what I did.

“I found it quite hard to get into a rhythm last year. I was in and out of the team and it was difficult mentally to get into the frame of mind of playing games consistent­ly.

“Individual­ly, this style suits me a lot better. It has been quite an easy transition but you’ve got players who have found it hard because they’ve played a certain way for a long time.”

Wednesday are rooted to the foot of the Championsh­ip table but showed signs they can start to pull themselves together under new boss Danny Rohl.

He said: “It’s hard, but I have a clear idea of what I want to do.”

 ?? ?? PARTY TIME James celebrates his winner and gets a hug from Rooney
PARTY TIME James celebrates his winner and gets a hug from Rooney

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