Having lost five of their last six games, Tottenham Hotspur haven’t had much to feel positive about of late. Manager Jose Mourinho is doing hit patented ‘blame the players routine’, claiming that his coaching methods are second to none in the world, and that Spurs have problems he alone can’t fix.
It’s a far cry from the nascent title challenge they appeared to be mounting earlier in the season. 9th in the table, the football is dire. It speaks to how low Tottenham have become that the only positive to speak of is an encouraging Gareth Bale performance in the 2 – 1 defeat to West Ham.
However, it is worth mentioning Gareth Bale. He didn’t score, or save the result against West Ham. He did, though, look like the Gareth Bale of old.
Bale’s loan move back to his beloved Tottenham hasn’t worked out so far. It appeared to be a major coup for Spurs. The idea of an attack featuring Kane, Son and Bale was as mouthwatering for Spurs as it was terrifying for everyone else.
Bale has barely featured though. When he has, it hasn’t been in the first team. He’s made 18 appearances so far this season. Eight in the Premier League, seven in the Europa League, two in the F.A Cup and one in the League Cup.
He has scored five goals, two in the Europa League, and one each in every other competition. It’s not the heroic return he would have hoped for. As well as that, it changes the narrative around his time in Madrid.
It seems his ability to produce physically truly has gone. Somehow, the four time Champions League winner is in a fight to save his legacy. Such is the short termism of football.
Bale’s plan all along was to go back to Spurs and get fit for the upcoming Euros. If he doesn’t play well for Wales come the summer, we will be wondering what happened to one of the world’s best players.