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Gareth Bale can be best British footballing export, according to Wales manager Chris Coleman

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Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale can become the best British footballing export, according to Wales manager Chris Coleman.

The former Fulham and Coventry boss takes charge of the star for the national side, who moved to Spain from Tottenham in 2013 and has become one of the world's best players. 

Coleman believes he can become one of the best British players to play overseas, eventually overtaking the likes of David Beckham and Kevin Keegan. 

"He's always been fond of running, he's got so much energy. He's such an athlete but where he has improved is knowing when to run and when to rest and that's important not to burn himself out," he said on Monday Night Football.

Gareth Bale celebrates scoring Real Madrid's first goal
Image: Gareth Bale can be the best British footballing export, says Chris Coleman

"His all-round understanding of the game has grown. I think he's been under such scrutiny at Real Madrid, every game he walks onto the pitch, there's pressure and he has to produce, which he has.

"He has grown in stature because of that experience and I think it's only a matter of time before he surpasses everybody as an export as a foreign player from this country and going abroad and everything anybody has done.

"If you see some of the people on the list, he's in great company with some fantastic players but I think he will go above and beyond that."

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Chris Coleman says Gareth Bale is "just like the rest of the lads"
Image: Coleman manages Bale for the Wales national side

Bale is also in the running for this year's Ballon d'Or award alongside the likes of teammate Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez.

However, despite some illustrious company in the running, Coleman believes his countryman is one of the best players on the planet and praised his contributions for Wales. 

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"It's a matter of opinion but in my opinion is that he's still getting better," the Dragons boss added. "For me, if he's not the best, there can only be one in front of him but he's an absolutely amazing player.

"He had one year at Real Madrid where he was heavily criticised. He was playing with injuries and he was missing games but he came back stronger for that experience.

"He scores incredible goals, he creates fantastic opportunities and his all-round general team play with Wales is absolutely extraordinary.

Wales' forward Gareth Bale (2nd R) celebrates with teammates after scoring the opening goal of the World Cup 2018 qualification match between Wales and Ser
Image: Coleman praised the forward for his contributions for Wales

"The trick with someone like him is trying to get him to believe in what you are trying to do. We changed our formation really because of the abilities he's got along with Aaron Ramsey.

"It seems to have got the best out of him when he comes to play for his country. He's got over 60 caps now and he's going to be the record goalscorer. He's a fantastic role model."

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