Scoring in two cup finals for one of the biggest clubs in football following a world record transfer fee can be seen as an impressive debut campaign for Gareth Bale, especially when the 22 goals and 16 assists he managed in all competitions are considered.
But as one of the game’s most feared players, one season of wonder isn’t going to be enough to propel the Welshman into Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi’s stratosphere.
Continued improvement will be needed.
Carlo Ancelotti, Bale’s coach, believes the former Tottenham winger is in a perfect position to better his efforts from last season, because he’s fully rested and raring to go in pre-season.
Immediately after swapping White Hart Lane for the Bernabeu, Bale was hampered by injuries having already been distracted in the season’s warm-up by the ebb and flow of his transfer saga.
Having played only five full matches of Madrid’s opening 16, Bale still managed to rack up impressive goal and assist numbers once fully fit.
Now, having enjoyed a 40-day holiday and injury free upon his return to training, Bale can steal a march on last season’s tallies by making a quick start to the 2014/15 campaign.
If he does, the 1/2 bwin are offering on the forward scoring over 15.5 La Liga goals (which would be a better return than last season) will look a mighty fine investment.
Since signing for Tottenham from Southampton in 2007, Bale has only had two campaigns where he scored fewer goals than in the previous term.
The first came in his second season at the Lane, where he failed to notch a single strike following a three-goal haul in his debut season.
The second was last season’s bow in Spain, where the aforementioned early speed bumps saw him fall four goals short of the 26 he scored in his final campaign in north London.