Real Madrid’s record-breaking signing Gareth Bale is adamant that Cristiano Ronaldo is the world’s best player, speaking after picking up a first hat-trick for the club in the 4-0 win over Valladolid on Saturday.
Ronaldo was missing for a second consecutive game with a slight muscle strain, but Bale stepped up to fill the massive boots of the Portuguese superstar and scored his eighth goal in his previous seven appearances for the Madrid side.
“It was a massive blow not having Cristiano playing,” he said.
“For me, he is the world’s best player and we had to do a job (without him) and thankfully we did that.”
“He has proven that not just with Real Madrid but with Portugal too and under pressure situations. He is a level above everyone else.”
The Welshman added that he did not feel any extra pressure on his shoulders in the absence of Ronaldo also that he was now finding form because he was now 100% fit after struggling with niggling injuries since the move from Tottenham Hotspurs.
“I didn’t feel any pressure to be honest, I just want to go out there and enjoy my football and play as well as I can. I try to do that and thankfully I got a hat-trick,” Bale added.
“I think as soon as I scored the second I was trying to get the third, I was trying my hardest to get into positions and thankfully the move did work out and it was a great ball by Marcelo to put it on a plate for me.”
“I am happy that I am settling down. I am enjoying my football and I think that showed tonight. I feel part of the team.”
“Every game that we play I am getting more used to it. I am enjoying it, which is the main thing.”
“I feel my fitness is there now. Obviously I think I am going to keep improving, learning off the best, like Cristiano, and hopefully I can keep improving and doing a lot better as well,” the Welshman concluded.