The English press were not alone in praising Gareth Bale for his outstanding performance for Tottenham Hotspur against Internazionale last night. All over the continent football writers were applauding the way the young Welshman took on Maicon, one of the best right-backs in the world.
Gazzetta dello Sport (Italy)Inter fell apart in front of a great Tottenham, admiring the abundance of talent and the athletic force of Gareth Bale and paying for the space they gave him. The Welshman simply started where he had left off at San Siro, making asphalt of Maicon, who is not exactly the worst full-back in the world. Bale went past him in a thousand different ways, and then delivered his crosses, which always landed on Crouch's head. The two last goals came from his assists and he dominated the left flank, destroying Maicon.
La Repubblica (Italy)And so the lessons from the first game had not been learned. Then, in Milan, Gareth Bale had ruled down the flank and scored three goals, but an antidote had not been found. This time he did not score but instead he produced a series of runs, first taking on Biabiany, then Maicon, who were literally trampled upon.
El Mundo (Spain)There can be few players faster than him with the ball at his feet. Tottenham have a cyclone on the left wing whose name is Gareth Bale. It was a memorable exhibition of speed and magnificent assists. Bale is bashing on the door of Europe's great clubs. It's years since someone knocked the ball so far in front of himself and ran after it like Bale does. Bale combines the height and build of an 800-metre runner like Steve Ovett with the acceleration and directness of a rugby winger like Bryan Habana. And, when he gets to the byline, he delivers curling crosses like a Brazilian.
Big words? Yes, but that's what Bale is like - easily the greatest sensation in the opening month and a half of the Champions League. Ask Maicon what he thinks after the two exhibitions Bale turned in against Inter. Yesterday he left Maicon for dead and then a wily old fox like Lúcio was left in his wake like someone trying to follow the vaportrail of an aeroplane. Three goals and two assists - against the European champions. His performances have been stunning.
Marca (Spain)A magical Bale ascends to White Hart Lane heaven. Spurs were led by a galáctico called Bale. He galloped up the wing and laid goals on a plate.
L'equipe (France)He was absolutely brilliant … he devoured Maicon.
Le Progres (France) Supersonic raids down the left … extremely fast and deft with the ball at his feet, he continually humiliated Maicon."
Kicker (Germany)Inter's right-back Maicon was up against the towering Bale - who hit a flawless hat-trick in the game in Milan - and was hopelessly stretched. The Welshman ran past the Brazilian international with ease time after time.
Blick (Switzerland)Samuel Eto'o pulled one back with 10 minutes to go but Inter simply could not find an answer to the rampaging Bale. The Welshman again ran past Maicon to supply the cross for Spurs to make it 3-1.
Voetbal International (Netherlands)Tottenham Hotspur have a gold mine in Gareth Bale. The left winger has finally broken through this season and suddenly the question is whether Tottenham can afford to keep him? In the past few months, the Welshman has been linked with moves to Barcelona, Inter, Manchester United, Milan and Real Madrid, but whoever buys him, it will be expensive.
Aftonbladet (Sweden)The young Welshman crushed, tortured, humiliated and toyed with Maicon, one of the best right-backs in the world. He ran like Alberto Juantorena, the Cuban who won 400m and 800m in the Olympics: when everyone thought he was tired, Bale just smiled and started another sprint. Bale simply hit the ball outside Maicon and ran past him. Time and time again, despite the fact that Maicon knew what was coming. And in the end Bale was so superior that he just hit the ball 20 metres and ran – with no Inter defender able to keep up.
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