The Welshman, on loan from Real Madrid to Tottenham, has been much more convincing in recent weeks in the Spurs jersey.
José Mourinho continued his week of praise for Tottenham’s fringe players by saying Gareth Bale is “happier than ever” and deserves full confidence, after a strong midweek Europa League performance against Wolfsberger.
On loan from Real Madrid, Bale did not play a major role in the campaign, but he did score a goal in the second leg of an 8-1 aggregate win, after scoring in the first leg the previous week. Another member of the squad, Dele Alli, also shone in the round of 16 and was supported by his coach.
Mourinho has made a good impression on Bale (and Alli) as Tottenham try to reverse the trend that has dropped him to ninth in the Premier League, suggesting the manager is ready to invite players until then neglected in his team.
“He looks happier than ever, he looks confident,” the Portuguese coach told reporters. “In training you can see that he has regained his confidence, by the way he hits. You could see his goal on Wednesday. It was a confident shot. A player who is scared or has negative feelings would never have hit that type of shot. To hit the ball that way I think it means a lot. It means freedom from the muscle of the brain. For that you have to be in good condition. He has been in the best condition since he arrived. “
With this improvement in Bale’s condition and confidence, Mourinho is not afraid to increase the attacker’s workload: “We trust him. We trust his experience and his analysis. And everything that happens with him is done with a great participation of all. Because everyone wants the best for him, because at the end of the day the best for him is the best for Tottenham. So the fact that it makes important contributions to us, is to do it little by little. Of course, we want it to be more continuous. Of course, we have very important Premier League matches, a crucial final, and crucial every minute of every Europa League game, so the more we have Gareth, a player with his quality, his confidence, his experience and his great moments know-how, the better. “
Tottenham have a chance to continue their good form in the coming weeks, with their next three Premier League games against Burnley, Fulham and Crystal Palace. They face Dinamo Zagreb in the round of 16 of the Europa League, with the first leg taking place on March 11, returning the following week.