The 100 Million Soccer Kid
His record transfer to Real Madrid is making news not just for the obvious reasons, but also because it’s still unclear who funded his fat cheque, which BTW is more than the GDP of seven countries. In a chat with Gareth Bale, FHM finds out more about this soccer maestro.
FHM: You are the most expensive player in the world right now – how does that feel?
I don’t think that is something players think about. Whatever transfer fee is paid or whatever money is involved is between the buying and the selling club and is nothing the player gets involved in. All I want is to be successful with Real Madrid, and win trophies with them.
FHM: The media reported there was a rift between Ronaldo and you because you broke the world record?
Gareth Bale: That is not true at all. From the first day I arrived, he has been a good friend to me. He has been giving me advice on and off the pitch and has made me feel really welcome. I think we have shown Spain and Europe how well we can play together – and there is a lot more to come from us.
FHM: Just how good is Ronaldo?
Gareth Bale: The only word I can use to describe him is unbelievable. He doesn’t just normally score when he plays but scores more than one. He shows no signs of slowing down, and to score the number of goals he does week after week is just unbelievable. He is about more than goals as well – his all-around game is faultless.
FHM: So he is the best player in the world according to you – above Messi and Ribery?
Gareth Bale: There are some great players in the world at the moment, but in truth, I don’t think anybody comes near Ronaldo at present. He deserves to be recognised as the best player in the world right now. He really deserves that award.
FHM: We hear David Beckham has been in touch as well?
Gareth Bale: Yes, when I joined Real Madrid, he texted me a few words of advice. It was great to hear from a man like David who has achieved so much. Advice is great, but the best thing you can do is show Real Madrid fans what you are capable of on the pitch.
FHM: What are your ambitions at Real Madrid?
Gareth Bale: There is an expectation at Real Madrid – I remember watching them when they had Figo, Zidane, and Raul in the same team – and there is just a real belief in the club and from the fans. We are expected to win league titles and Champions League titles, and that is what I came here for. As a football player, you always want to win the biggest trophies and that’s why I’m at Real Madrid.
FHM: What does the world’s most expensive player do to relax?
Gareth Bale: I am just so focused on having a successful season with Real Madrid that when I’m not training or playing I just like to relax and do something like watch a movie or maybe go out for a meal.
FHM: You are one of the few players who doesn’t drink – is that for professional reasons?
Gareth Bale: It wasn’t like I just decided not to drink alcohol. I mean of course I’ve tried it – I just don’t like the taste. I guess not drinking must do me some good.
FHM: There is a lot of focus on you now – do you believe top players have a duty to be role models?
Gareth Bale: Yes, I think so. I mean all human beings are going to make mistakes, but we have to know that there will be a lot of youngsters looking up to us, and we have a duty to behave in a positive way.