Spanish Football Expert & Columnist @GuillemBalague
Why would Gareth Bale leave Real Madrid? asks Guillem Balague
Last Updated: 18/09/17 10:29pm
Guillem Balague insists everything would seem smaller to Gareth Bale if he was to leave Real Madrid.
Bale, who answered some critics with a fine goal in Madrid's 3-1 win over Real Sociedad on Sunday, has been jeered in recent weeks by some supporters for under-par performances.
He has been sporadically linked with a return to the Premier League with Manchester United over the past 18 months, but Balague says Real are the pinnacle of football at present.
He said on the La Liga Weekly Podcast: "Let's not undervalue the fact that he's at Real Madrid. After Real Madrid, anything looks smaller. It doesn't matter if it's Manchester United.
"For players, this is the top of the game now. The commercial side multiplies by a thousand, but also the repercussion of what they do.
"And by the way, we're talking about a team leading an era, we are in the era of Real Madrid. Why would you leave to go to a team that finished sixth last season?"
Balague added that Bale is still not feeling like himself since his return from a long-term calf injury, but insists we will see the best of him this season.
"For me, there are two big reasons why he has been underperforming. One, when he gets injured, Isco comes into the side, becomes the main powerful force of Real Madrid, and it changes the style.
"Everybody is comfortable with passing the ball around, sometimes counter-attacking, but most of the time passing and creating, which kills the space that makes Bale so good. Also when Ronaldo is in the side, Bale struggles to find the correct position to make him lethal.
"And two, the injury he has had, apparently he had a chat with Ashley Cole who had a similar injury, and he said it will take six months. Not just the four months you have off, but two months to actually feel yourself again.
"It happened in November, the injury, but the problem is he came back too early, he decided to come back and made it worse. So we're talking about a whole year to recover those feelings; he doesn't quite have that yet.
"We still haven't seen the best of Bale, but everybody is convinced we will, injury permitting."
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