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Robert Lewandowski warns Jude Bellingham ahead of race for Pichichi Trophy

Barcelona striker Robert Lewandowski has praised Real Madrid midfielder Jude Bellingham for his fast start to the season, but warned he is out to score more goals in the race for the Pichichi Trophy.

Bellingham has become a global phenomenon since joining Real Madrid from Borussia Dortmund over the summer, registering 13 goals and three assists in his 14 games so far for Los Blancos. Many of the 20-year-old’s strikes have come late on to secure wins for Real Madrid, including in their 2-1 victory at Barca in El Clasico last month.

10 of Bellingham’s goals in Real Madrid colours have come in La Liga, and he currently leads the scoring charts – his closest rivals are Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann and Villarreal’s Gerard Moreno, who have eight goals each.

During his debut 2022/23 season for Barcelona, Lewandowski scored a La Liga-high 23 goals to take home the Pichichi trophy – Spain’s version of the Golden Boot. He currently has seven goals to his name so far this term.

When asked by MARCA when collecting his award if he is ready to fight Bellingham for the Pichichi award, Lewandowski said: “The season is long. He [Bellingham] is a very good player. Now it is not easy to score many goals in La Liga.

“Many teams, they play with a defensive and physical style. But we are Barca. We not only want to win, but score many goals.”

Lewandowski added his success “hasn’t stopped my hunger to achieve more” but despite his assertions, Barcelona (26) have scored only the fourth-most goals in La Liga so far this season, with Real Madrid (28), Atletico Madrid (29) and Girona (31) all finding the net more frequently.

Barcelona also have ground to make up if they are to retain their La Liga title, heading into the November international break third in the table – two points adrift of Real Madrid and four behind Girona.

Barca return to action on Saturday with a trip to Rayo Vallecano, while Real Madrid visit Cadiz on Sunday.

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