Gareth Bale has now surpassed Ronaldo Nazario's goal tally at Real Madrid

FBL-ESP-CUP-UNIONISTAS SALAMANCA-REAL MADRID

Gareth Bale has essentially been a passenger at Real Madrid this season.

The Welshman looked on course for a record-breaking move to China in the summer and based on Zinedine Zidane's comments, the Real coaching staff would have been over the moon.

However, the transfer never transpired and it's felt as though Bale has just been winding down the clock this season in the wake of a seemingly inevitable summer exit.

You'd certainly hope that's the case when Bale was openly parading the 'Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that order' banner after Wales' qualification for Euro 2020 in November.

In fact, Bale seems to have been making more headlines in Spain for jokes about his love for golf as opposed to his work on the pitch.

Bale scores vs Unionistas

Zidane hasn't completely exiled the 30-year-old as some might have expected, but just nine starts in La Liga and one in the Champions League is nothing to get too excited about.

It's a shame that Bale's career at the Bernabeu seems to be ending this way and fans got a brief glimpse of what they'll likely be missing during the Copa del Rey win over Unionistas.

Los Blancos didn't have it all their own way against the Segunda Division B side, but Bale still fired them into an 18th-minute lead with a bobbling right-footed volley at the near post.

FBL-ESP-CUP-UNIONISTAS SALAMANCA-REAL MADRID

More goals than Brazilian Ronaldo

So, what was so special about it? It was the significance of Bale reaching 105 goals for Real that far outweighed the seemingly nondescript nature of the finish and opponents.

That's because it now means Bale has scored more goals for Real than the legendary Ronaldo Nazario. 

What's more, it only took Bale 69 more appearances in the famous white jersey to reach that number, which is pretty impressive considering he wasn't a number nine like the Brazilian.

And it's a statistic that really underlines how under-appreciated Bale has been in the Spanish capital, because some fans would have you believe that he's been a flop at the club.

Plus, his next goal for Real will take him level with Zidane (49) and Luis Figo (57) combined. Not bad going.

Real Madrid's Raul (R) celebrates Ronald

GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

Real fans are notorious for being harsh - they even booed Cristiano Ronaldo at one point - but few players have been done as dirty as Bale.

Sure, his behaviour has left a lot to be desired this season, but Zidane hasn't exactly been a guardian angel either by publicly declaring that he wants the Welshman to swan off.

Fans and the coaches alike need to put respect on a player who has scored winning goals in two Champions League finals, the first of which secured the long-desired 'La Decima.'

Real Madrid v Liverpool - UEFA Champions League Final

Oh, and that's not to mention his worldie in the 2014 Copa del Rey final and scoring a belter at Camp Nou in 2018. 

Bale should walk out of the Bernabeu exit door as soon as he can because he's given everything for a club that has given next to nothing in return. Aside from the silverware, that is...

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