CASILLAS BACKS BALE

Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas believes that summer signing Gareth Bale can go on to become a club legend after managing to impress a lot in the last few months. Bale was brought from Tottenham in a world-record move that cost the club £ 86 million. However, his first few months at the Santiago Bernabeu were less than ideal since he was in and out of the team due to a succession of injury problems. This coupled with the superior form shown by Cristiano Ronaldo led many to believe that Bale was going to crumble under the pressure like many of the British players in the past.

However, the former Tottenham star has recovered extremely well and has been one of the first names on the team sheet in the last few months. He has been used on the right side of the front three with Ronaldo to occupy the left. Karim Benzema has been leading the attack. Bale has managed to get 10 goals and the same number of 10 assists so far. Even though these figures are not close to the once achieved by Ronaldo, the 24-year-old has stated that he will only get better especially with a proper pre-season. The Welsh international did not have a pre-season this campaign since he was involved in the protracted transfer saga.

“Legend is a word that can be over used. But Gareth Bale has proved already he has the talent to go on and become a legend at Real Madrid. During my time here I have seen real legends like Raul, Zidane, Ronaldo, and now Cristiano. Gareth is not out of place in that company, not at all. He is a young guy and if he spends his best years here then he can join that group of names. He must play a big part in Madrid winning trophies,” said Casillas.

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UNDER PRESSURE

Gareth Bale’s astronomically high €77 million price tag puts a lot of pressure and expectations on the former Tottenham player and the Welshman has not been enjoying the best of seasons with Real Madrid as he has missed a number of matches for the Spanish club due to injuries.

The former player and manager of Real Madrid, Jorge Valdano has surely not been impressed by the performances displayed by the Welshman as he even stated that Bale is being saved by his teammates during the bad moments of Bale.

“Bale has a rare anxiety because he doesn’t seem to be with the pace of the game. When you’re anxious, you play at a speed above what suits you, but he is absent. The team saves him. There are many points of attention, including Jese, who is going unnoticed in Bale’s bad moments.” Valdano said regarding the arrival of Bale to Real Madrid.

Jese Rodriguez is a 20 years old forward that has been stepping up to the plate and scored a few important goals for Real Madrid. He managed to find the back of the net during Real Madrid’s match against Atletico Madrid, Athletic Bilbao and against Villareal just to name a few of his most recent contributions to the Spanish club.

When Jese was asked about who Carlo Ancelotti decides on placing in his starting lineup, the Spanish striker stated that everything he does is work hard in order to make the decision of the coach tough.

Jese said: “What the coach said about choosing for sporting, not institutional, reasons was very important. I try and persuade him in training and during matches. In this club every game is a test. You need to make it tough for your teammates too. They would do it too if I was in the starting XI.”

BALE IS FIT

Carlo Ancelotti has revealed that he has no problem with the fitness of Gareth Bale and insists that the Welshman will be included in the squad that will play against Celta de Vigo. Bale has suffered from numerous injuries since the start of the season, but it has been largely attributed to the lack of pre-season, as he was involved in the protracted transfer to Madrid. Since regaining fitness, he has been one of the best players for Madrid. He has already scored close to double figures after having made just 15 appearances this campaign.

Ancelotti recently stated that he expected more from Bale, whose performances have dipped in recent weeks. However, he is expected to include the most expensive player in the world for the match against Celta de Vigo. Madrid must win all the league matches from here on in order to have a chance of winning the title. They are already five points behind Barcelona, but they also have to contend with the threat from Atletico Madrid, who are also in the mix for the title.

Ancelotti says that Bale has trained for the last week without any problem and he expects the 24-year-old to play against Celta de Vigo. Cristiano Ronaldo, who Bale beat to the tag of being the most expensive player, recently won the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for the second time.

“He will be included in the squad for the match [on Monday], but I have yet to decide if he’s going to play. He has trained this week, he’s fine, he doesn’t have any problems. But we might wait a bit more so as to play him at peak condition,” said Ancelotti.

Ronaldo leads the goalscoring charts for Real Madrid with 20 league goals already and he is closely followed by Diego Costa.