Gareth Bale's former team-mate Casemiro has debunked a myth about Tottenham's summer signing following their time together at Real Madrid.
Bale joined Spurs on loan last month, returning to the club where he became a star before earning a £90million move to the Santiago Bernabeu in 2013.
The Wales forward's move to Jose Mourinho's side ended a summer of speculation over his future, with Bale having been frozen out at Madrid under head coach Zinedine Zidane.
Manchester United were heavily linked with a swoop for the 31-year-old, amid reports that Bale was unsettled in Spain, had made little attempt to learn the language and was a loner in the dressing room.
There was also much comment about how Bale's talent was being wasted at the La Liga club, with the player having been regarded as a world beater when he first joined the club.
It was believed at the time that he was on a similar trajectory to Cristiano Ronaldo – who of course has gone on to be regarded as one of the greatest players of all time, while Bale is seldom described as being in the same bracket.
Now Casemiro, who joined Los Blancos the same year as Bale, has revealed that talk of Bale not getting on with his team-mates was nonsense – and hailed the former Southampton star as one of the top five players in the world.
“He got along very well with everyone. When he plays, if he’s focused, he’s one of the best in the world, top five without a doubt,” the Brazil midfielder told Movistar Plus program Vamos, cited by Defensa Central.
Casemiro wished Bale luck in his return to Tottenham, and thanked him for his trademark stunning goals – which famously included a magnificent overhead kick and a 30-yard strike in Madrid's triumph over Liverpool in the 2018 Champions League final.
“It’s a pleasure for me to have shared the dressing room with someone like him," said Casemiro.
"I hope it goes well at this stage at Tottenham. I thank you for the ‘chirlos’ [screamers] you scored in the finals. When I think of Gareth, I remember those good times.”
Bale could make his second Tottenham debut in Sunday's Premier League clash at home to West Ham.
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