Harry Redknapp bigs up ‘humble’ Gareth Bale by comparing him to Messi and Ronaldo
Following Bale’s retirement from football, former Spurs coach Redknapp claimed that Bale was only behind Ronaldo and Messi
Former Spurs boss Harry Redknapp who is the man that is somewhat responsible for Bale’s big break at Spurs, claims that the 33-year-old was only behind Ronaldo and Messi at his peak.
This comes after Gareth Bale announced his retirement from football at the age of 33, having played for the likes of Spurs, Real Madrid and LAFC during his career while captaining Wales in major tournaments.
won 5 Champions League titles and 3 La Liga trophies with Real Madrid but prior to that he played for Tottenham and under Harry Redknapp. Now his former manager has spoken to Stats Perform about Bale’s demeanor and how good the Welsh Wizard actually was.
"I suppose it was a bit of a surprise but not a great surprise,"
"He'd gone to America [joining MLS side Los Angeles FC in June], not played many games and even though he came on in the [MLS Cup] final and scored a goal, he looked like he wasn't figuring in their team much.
"He played in the World Cup, did okay [and it was] great to get Wales there, a fantastic achievement. But in all honesty, it wasn't a Gareth Bale when they played England [losing 3-0 in the group stage] or anybody really that we've come to see over the years.
"He maybe felt he couldn't reach the heights [he used to] and the standards he set over so many seasons when he was absolutely fantastic for me, when he was the third-best player in the world for a period behind Ronaldo and Messi.
"And maybe he felt he couldn't quite get back to that again and decided [to] maybe call it a day. But he's had a fantastic career."
Despite Bale being at Tottenham a year before Redknapp, it was Redknapp who encouraged him to go forward a bit more and utilized him in more attacking roles.
"I sort of inherited him in that position,"
"But I knew him from Southampton, I'd followed his career very closely and knew that he was an amazing talent from a very early age.
"When I went toTottenham
, I was very much looking forward to working with him because I just felt he was a player with the ability to go on to become a big star. He was a left-back, I pushed him forward onto the left wing, but if he had stayed at left-back, he'd have been the best left-back in the world, he was just an amazing talent.
"He had everything really, he had the physique, he had the ability to run, that speed with and without the ball, he could dribble, he could shoot, he could head it. There was nothing really that he couldn't do.
"He wasn't obsessed with football. He wouldn't be one in the dressing room that would voice any opinions or one that would want to spend hours out practising after training. It just came very easy to him, he was just a fantastic, naturally gifted footballer and athlete."
Redknapp went on to talk about Bale’s professionalism and manners while working under his guidance, saying:
"He was so easy to handle, he was just a smashing lad. He was low maintenance, was never a problem, you knew at night he wasn't out in nightclubs or drinking. He's a family man.
"[He was] quite humble, quite shy. But when he got on the pitch and he got the ball, away he went and when he got it, whoever was playing against him was in trouble every time... [it was] just amazing what he could do."
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