Jobe Bellingham's response Sunderland fans will love amid Newcastle and Tottenham transfer links

Jobe Bellingham discusses his first season at Sunderland and targets for the rest of the campaign.
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Jobe Bellingham says Sunderland is the perfect place to grow amid reported interest from Premier League clubs.

The 18-year-old signed a long-term contract with the Black Cats in the summer, when he arrived from Birmingham, and has started 30 of 33 league games this season. Bellingham's performances won't have gone unnoticed, with recent reports claiming Tottenham and Newcastle have shown interest.

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Yet the teenager says he's loving life at Sunderland and has learnt a great deal during his eight months at the club. "The atmosphere on matchdays is amazing," Bellingham told That's Football. "It's the perfect place to grow. What I've learnt is probably to not get too high and not get too low because it's a really emotional club. There are so many people who care about the club and want the best for it.

"In the Championship it's game after game, so when you do lose it's not the end of the world, although it can feel like it, especially at this club where it means so much."

Bellingham has scored five goals and provided one assist for Sunderland in the Championship this season, with 13 games remaining as the Black Cats look to make a late run into the play-offs.

When asked about his personal targets, Bellingham replied: "Obviously as a team we need to get this club back to the Premier League where it belongs. On a personal note, I was looking at 10 goal involvements at the start of the season and I think I'm on track to do that. I need to keep chipping in with more goals and more assists, that's a target. At the end of the day that's what wins you games so that's the target for me."

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On playing regularly in the Championship, Bellingham added: "I'm loving it. I'm just glad I can get to play so much for such a great club and with great teammates.

"I feel as though every other week I'm improving, you have the odd tough game but that's expected. I think at my age the amount of minutes, and then obviously what the league is like, it is tough and you have to get used to it. It's really harsh and relentless but I think in the long run it'll be really good for me."

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