Real Madrid's new galactico Gareth Bale is not worth the £85million fee he commanded yesterday, and has much prove before comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo are justified, according to his former Spurs team-mate Rafael van der Vaart.

The Dutch playmaker saw Bale develop at close quarters during their two years together at White Hart Lane, but admitted that he can scarcely believe his former club Madrid broke the world transfer record to sign the Welshman.

Van der Vaart told Dutch news outlet NOS: "€100m (£85m) is a bit much. You should ask yourself if a player is worth that amount at all. I've played with him, but I couldn't see that he was worth 100 million back then.

"He did develop quite good, but still he has to prove his worth at Real. You can't compare him with Messi and Ronaldo, because they're from another level. If you make so many goals for so many years and win all these prizes they have won, it's not fair to compare anybody else with those guys.

"I've been in his situation, only Real paid a little less money for me back then. I would like to wish him all the best at Real Madrid, because Gareth is a great lad."

Bale is in line to make his debut for Madrid in next Saturday's clash with Villarreal, but has first joined the Wales squad for their next World Cup qualifiers against Macedonia and Serbia respectively.

Van der Vaart is also plying his trade away from White Hart Lane this season, as the playmaker settles into a second season with Bundesliga outfit Hamburger SV.

The 30-year-old is a regular for the Dutch national side but will miss the latest round of World Cup qualifiers, after pulling out of the squad with a hamstring injury earlier today.

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