Tottenham Hotspur have agreed a season-long loan with Real Madrid that sees Gareth Bale return to Premier League football. Manager of Spurs, Jose Mourinho, is delighted to welcome the captain of the Welsh national team back to the club he left seven years ago. Bale is pleased to be returning, saying “It’s nice to be back. It’s such a special club for me. It’s where I made my name”.
The Welsh star’s lustre had faded badly in the last couple of years at Madrid and his poor standing with manager Zinedine Zidane and his predecessors had led to a drought in match play that, in turn, has ultimately led to a fractious relationship with Real Madrid fans.
But none can deny that, during his first four or five years in Madrid, Bale made a huge impact and delivered on both the national and international stages. After his transfer from Tottenham in 2013 (for a then world record £85 million) he went on to score more than 100 goals for the Spanish club and win four Champions League trophies with his team-mates. Add to that two La Liga titles, one Copa del Rey, three UEFA Super Cups and three Club World Cups and you will agree that Gareth Bale has a wealth of experience of world-class football and winning major tournaments that will provide enormous benefit to Tottenham Hotspur, and which will prove intimidating to opponents.
So, how many goals will Bale net in the 2020/21 season? Last season’s top tally (Jamie Vardy’s 23 goals for Leicester City) is unlikely to be matched or surpassed by Bale, if only because he is not even due to play until after the October international break. Bookmaker Skybet offers odds of 40/1 that Bale will score 20+ goals this season, with those odds shortening to 4/1 for a tally of 15+ goals. Certainly 10+ goals seems achievable and Skybet confirms this with odds of 1/3.
Mourinho will certainly be expecting Bale to display a high level of motivation and commitment from the outset, qualities that were latterly conspicuous by their absence in Madrid. The Welshman is confident that he can deliver, saying “It’s a good time for me. I’m hungry and motivated. I want to do well for the team and can’t wait to get started”.
We expect some collateral damage to result from this loan, however. Spurs now have an excessive number of rather expensive strikers/midfielders and it is rumoured that 24-year old Dele Alli’s place on the team is in jeopardy, something that Mourinho has refused to deny. Alli has only 45 minutes of match play this season, and if he is to be transferred as a result of Bale’s loan it will need to be done before the October international break.
Bale will join captain Harry Kane and Song Heung-Min to create a compelling power-house of strikers that has the potential to annihilate some of the weaker teams in the Premier League and cause the top teams – such as Manchester City and Liverpool – a good few headaches. We cannot wait to see him in action!