Could Gareth Bale flourish alongside Ronaldo in Spain?
Gareth Bale has been linked to move to Real Madrid - but would he succeed there?
Perhaps the most in-form player in the world right now, certainly in Europe; Gareth Bale has remained a target for Real Madrid.
That is, if Tottenham Hotspur would want to sell this summer. Of course, if they achieve Champions League status Bale may opt to stay with the North London club for another season. But the latest rumours which have emerged report that Real Madrid desperately want to make Gareth Bale their latest Galactico.
It is reported that Gareth Bale could be subject to a £70million bid from Real Madrid; £30million on the table at White Hart Lane up front, and then the remaining amount will be paid over the course of four years
For players with flair, such as Gareth Bale, the hardest thing to achieve is consistency. It is definitely not easy when the fans and critics expect to see wonder goals and mind-boggling runs, ripping apart defenders. These kinds of players are expected to dribble, create the chances and go on to the score goals; all the while the focus is on them.
What Gareth Bale is doing right now is unbelievable, he is undeniably the most exciting player in English football at the minute, and many teams find it difficult to stop him.
It is true, sometimes we are accused of going overboard in Britain, judging a player’s quality based on a handful of games; but for the last couple of months Gareth Bale has been incredible. We have seen glimpses of what he can do and potentially achieve, and the fact that he is now doing this every week backs it all up.
He is adding the consistency which is required, really coming of age this season and it is no wonder that he is a high favourite to be awarded the Player of the Year, alongside the likes of Juan Mata, Robin van Persie and Luis Suarez. The only thing Gareth Bale needs to do is deliver this kind of form for around four or five years before we can actually start talking about him being at the same level as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
He has the strength, pace, he can beat people and he has vastly improved on his free-kicks. He is only 23-years-old and still developing.
The question is; could he flourish in Spain?
Let’s take a look at reasons why Gareth Bale may or may not exceed expectations in Spain.
Why he could succeed...
Counter attacking football – Real Madrid play a fast counter-attacking brand of football, something which Gareth Bale would thrive in thanks to his extraordinary pace. Although it is difficult to say whether Real Madrid would keep Cristiano Ronaldo on the left, and move Gareth Bale towards the right, one thing is clear; the uncertainty of Angel Di Maria’s future would be great news for Bale, less competition and he can make his mark on either flank. He and Ronaldo would speed past defenders who would be torn between whom to mark.
His work rate – Gareth Bale is one of the hardest working players in Britain, and there is no doubt that Bale would take this hard working mentality wherever he plays. Ever manager and every fan of clubs want players who help out defensively, and with Gareth Bale’s career as a left-back he could use this to his advantage. The likes of Mesut Ozil, Kaka and Luka Modric have a good work-rate, but none of them have that defensive mentality; Bale on the other hand would be extremely useful in pressing high up the field.
His young age – Remember, Gareth Bale is only 23-years-old; there is no way he is in his prime yet, and he will only become better season after season. Similarly to Ronaldo - he will probably repay the hefty price-tag. Against the big boys of Europe, the likes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Manchester City, Manchester United and even Borussia Dortmund; Real’s attack seems to lose its potency, as they become stifled going forward. This is because three or four players mark Ronaldo, however with Gareth Bale on the pitch who is capable of doing the same damage as Ronaldo, there would be fewer burdens on the forward. The opposition would have a very difficult time handling two players capable of destroying defences; much like Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi at Barcelona.
Why he may not succeed...
Too similar to Ronaldo – Although it sounds like a dream pairing, the two are too similar in attack; this could prove to be a huge problem since they both may go for the same balls, both may want to take command over the set-pieces and both would definitely like to finish off the counter-attacking moves. Gareth Bale would be required to make the sacrifices which could produce resentment or affect his morale.
The expectation – We know he will be expected to be as dominant in Spain as he has been in Britain, but it could prove too much to handle at a young age. The likes of Kaka and Luka Modric haven’t exactly flourished, but the media will definitely scrutinise his every move. If he gets on the wrong side of ‘Marca’; the Madrid based newspaper, he will be in trouble much like Fabio Coentrao. And his transfer fee may cause first season nerves. But if he can handle that pressure, kudos to him.
Florentino Perez’ personal gain – Sometimes, Real Madrid President Florentino Perez signs Galacticos in order to improve his standing at the club. There's always the possibility that Bale could be brought in to make the fans happy and get the votes in his favour. Whilst it looks likely that Jose Mourinho will be gone in the summer, the new manager may not want or need the Welshman, as he could have a different philosophy.
Obviously the talk of Gareth Bale moving to Real Madrid is premature, as he may turn down the chance; but you have to consider whether Bale could prove to be a hit in Spain, or not.
What do you think? Have your say below...
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