Gareth Bale scored two wonderful goals for Tottenham Hotspurs in the first leg of their last 32 tie against Lyon in the Europa Cup. Bale hit two identical free kicks at the end of each half to secure a 2-1 lead for Spurs ahead of the return match in France.
Despite Bale’s mesmerizing efforts the Lyon goal was even better. Their 19-year-old full back Samuel Umtiti hit an unstoppable shot from outside the penalty to peg the Spurs back after Bale’s first strike right at the end of the first half. That player then scored the winning goal in injury time after another wondrous free kick from outside the penalty area.
Bale has now scored six goals in his last five matches, including five for Spurs and another fine effort for his country Wales in the friendly international against Austria. The Welshman signed a four year contract last summer but his latest performance must reignite interest from the powers of world football.
Both Barcelona and Real Madrid have expressed an interest in the past and Chelsea and the two Manchester clubs in England would also be interested in signing Bale, even though the fee would be approaching £50 million. He began his career at Southampton but now looks destined to play in the Champions League for one of the major global soccer powers.
Lionel Messi (pictured) is considered to be the best player in the world and he has won the Ballon D’Or awarded to the world’s best for the last four years. Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 300 goals in 10 years playing for Manchester United and Real Madrid and only Messi could claim to be a better player.
The Spurs manager, Andre Villas-Boas, has said that Bale is just about the best player in the world at the moment even with Messi and Ronaldo at their best. Bale has developed a unique technique for taking free kicks which involves putting dip and swerve on the ball. He has recently shown that his work on the training pitch to refine this skill is now paying off in matches for his club and country.