Former Tottenham manager Glenn Hoddle pinpointed a key area that may allow Gareth Bale to excel under Jose Mourinho.
Bale is back at Tottenham on a season-long loan deal upon falling out of favor at Real Madrid. The injury-prone star hasn’t featured for Mourinho’s side, but could do so in Sunday’s Premier League clash with West Ham.
Questions have been raised over what the four-time Champions League winner has to offer of late. Not only is he now 31, but his struggles for game time in the last few seasons have been well documented.
But while acknowledging Bale won’t be able to use the same pace and power he was once famed for at Spurs, Hoddle believes the Welshman’s creativity could instead make him a key man once again in north London.
“Gareth might not be that box-to-box player he was five or six years ago, when he was all about using his pace,” Hoddle said on the Glenn Hoddle Footy Show podcast.
“Now, he might be as much a creator if he is played deeper or drops deeper, much the way that Harry Kane did when he provided all four goals for Son Heung-min at Southampton recently. I can see Bale doing that for Kane.
“I think Bale has the sensational ability to pass, he’s not just a ‘runner’ at defenders, I can see him as the creator maybe the team are lacking. Gareth’s always been one that has got that ability to pass the ball as well, he can play with his head up.
“In certain games, the other massive bonus for me and from a manager’s point of view for Jose, when you look along the bench you want game-changers and with Gareth coming in now, you’ve got Lucas Moura on the bench, possibly you might have Kane on the bench to rest him at times, you can have Son on the bench.
“Mourinho’s got flexibility up there now which really Spurs haven’t had. Kane had to play almost every minute when he’s fit and I think that flexibility is going to be massive for Tottenham, it really is.”