In order for Gareth Bale to be better than Cristiano Ronaldo, he has to forget about him, completely.
Gareth Bale is faster than Ronaldo, and I believe naturally better. When Ronaldo runs, he is busting a gut, when Bale runs, it looks effortless.
When Ronaldo does skills and tricks, it is manufactured and learned, Bale doesn't need tricks. Ronaldo has adopted footballing traits and fine tuned them to perfection with hard work and devotion, but they are not his own. Gareth Bale is unique - other players could not imitate what he does on a football pitch.
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Have you ever been in a job where you have established yourself after a certain amount of years, and you feel untouchable and head and shoulders above the rest of your colleagues?
Have you ever left a perfect job to pursue greener pastures, having felt like there wasn't anything else you could achieve? Is there a time when you have started a new job, similar to the job you have left, and all of a sudden you don't feel like you are as good as you once thought, or as good as you know you are, because there are people there who you think are better than you?
This can be intimidating and nerve-racking, and it can heap unnecessary pressure on anyone and be detrimental to their own performance physically and mentally.
Is this what Gareth Bale is experiencing at Real Madrid? Similar to the aforementioned analogy, Gareth Bale, when at Tottenham Hotspur, was 'head and shoulders' above the rest of his team mates, and his spectacular individual performances were what allowed him to make his childhood dream move to the Spanish giants, a reality.
However, it's a completely different story at Real Madrid, because there are in fact, many other players there who are world class who perform consistently week in and week out, and if you're not performing on a level par to all of those around you then fingers will be pointed, and this could begin to effect your own ability.
There is no hiding behind the fact that Cristian Ronaldo is the main-man at Real Madrid, and this was predominantly the case even before Gareth Bale signed, but with Ronaldo a dominant presence in the team, will the quiet unassuming Gareth Bale ever be able to be the player he is destined to be?
If the entire tactical ethos is orientated around Ronaldo it could perhaps be quite hard to implement your own personal stamp on a team - because every time you get the ball you're going to be pressured into giving it to the main man, and instead of thinking about what you are doing, you are going to be concerned with what other people are doing.
Nine times out of ten, Ronaldo gets a chance and scores, so if you're scoring only three times out of ten yourself, then people will moan whenever you miss, and instead of you shooting and missing they would rather it that you played the ball to someone else who can score.
When you have an opportunity where you want to shoot, but you are thinking should you pass instead, then you will never be decisive and clinical.
At Spurs, everybody looked for Bale, at Wales, everybody looks to play the ball to Bale - at Real Madrid, everyone looks for Ronaldo, because they know what he can do. So if you're Bale in a Real Madrid team that has a Ronaldo and you're are scoring and performing consistently, then everybody is going to give the ball to you, as well as Ronaldo. However, if you are getting opportunities to score and you keep missing them, then people will eventually forget about you and give the ball to the person that they can rely on.
Bale could be caught in two minds
You see Bale playing for Wales and he gets an opportunity and dispatches with aplomb, just as he did so consistently when playing for Spurs, yet a similar type of chance can often be seen squandered by him at Real Madrid.
This could be because he doesn't feel pressured while playing for Wales because there, he is the main man. I believe it is because he is 'caught in two minds' as to whether to pass to Ronaldo or whether to shoot himself.
Do you really think Cristiano Ronaldo cares what Gareth Bale thinks if he misses a chance? Do you think that Ronaldo is worried about not having a shot because he his concerned whether Bale will moan at him or not?
Of course not! This could be the case in regards to Bale's thoughts, though.
We all know how good Michael Owen was when he played for Liverpool, but he was a shadow of that player when he was at Real Madrid and this could be because he was intimidated by the likes of Ronaldo, Zidane, Figo and Carlos. The difference here though is I don't think that Owen was as good as any of those players, but I think that Bale is better than all of the Real Madrid players, including Cristiano Ronaldo.
The reason why Bale is hit and miss at Real Madrid could be down to his own psychological failures, his own inhibitions, and self-doubt.
But Bale will be all that Ronaldo is and more when he completely rids Ronaldo out of his own mind. We have already seen that he has the capability, with some of the stunning goals that his has scored, he just lacks consistency.
If he takes control of his own mind and believes that he is better than Ronaldo and everyone else at Real, like he did at Spurs, like he does playing for Wales, and deletes Ronaldo out of his mind completely, and just does his own thing, pass when he wants, shoot when he wants, moan when he wants, dribble when he wants, and doesn't do something because it's what others want him to do then he will surpass Ronaldo and what he has done... He is that good!
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