Gareth Bale slams first goal for the Spurs, has he done enough for Mourinho to use him in the starting XI?
By the looks of it and Mourinho's words, it will be some time before the Welshman makes a full 90-minute appearance
First things first. Tottenham Hotspur has now moved to second place on the points table. Their win against Brighton on Sunday, November 1, had two of their stars, Harry Kane and Gareth Bale netting a goal each to put the team in a strong position. Not only was it a day out for Jose Mourinho's forwards, but it also saw them being a lot more clinical in the field. It also does feel like the big six are now slipping into their groove better.
Bale came in as a substitute for Erik Lamela in the 70th minute and made an immediate impact. A Sergio Reguilon cross was headed straight into the net as Bale recorded his first goal of the Premier League season. For the prodigal son, this was a chance to make a statement and he did so in a game that was crucial for the Spurs. Ahead of the game, Mourinho hinted the Wales skipper was coming into his own and his own self
It wasn't just the goal that now sends a warning message to other teams. Bale's playmaking skill was on full display when he flicked the ball on a corner towards the back post in a slick move that saw Kane going for it. While did manage to get feet on the ball, he just couldn't send it over the line. However, the VAR-heavy game was finally settled with a Bale header which would have otherwise seen a drawn affair.
Mourinho used this as the perfect opportunity to take a dig at Bale's former club, Real Madrid. Post the match, the gaffer showered lavish praise on Bale. "But today, great personality, great impact, a very important goal for us. I am pleased especially for him because he deserves that. When I have five minutes, I'm going to Safari to look at Madrid websites to see what they say," he said according to ESPN.
The next question fans will have is to see whether Bale has done enough to merit a place in the starting XI. By the looks of it, it does seem like he might have to wait a couple of games before Mourinho brings him in. From what Mourinho said, it will be some time before the Welshman still has enough in his tank for a high-paced 90-minute game.
"He doesn't have 90 minutes of a Premier League match in his legs yet, so we are using the Europa League to complement his training process," the Spurs manager said. "We are using some matches in the Premier League when we decide to play him, and, of course, the normal tendency for him will be to be better and better and better."
Spurs play the Ludogorets next in their Europa League fixture and follow it up with a game against West Brom. Both games might see a bit of Bale and the winger just might look to sneak in some more impressive performances and push his case for a place in the starting XI.