Casillas hails Gareth Bale: Tottenham star one of the world's best

Real Madrid goalkeeper puts Tottenham Hotspur forward in same company as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Premier League star Gareth Bale, 24, is already one of the best players in the world and closing in on consensus top two world footballers Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid and Lionel Messi of Barcelona, according to Real captain Iker Casillas.

'He is one of the best three or four players in Europe,' confirmed the Spanish shot-stopper, capped 148 times internationally.

Bale returned 26 goals from 44 appearances last season, more than double his tally of 12 from the 2011-12 campaign. His consistent ability to score eye-catching goals has seen him attract the attention of a number of admirers and is currently at the centre of a transfer storm between Real and Tottenham Hotspur, who stand firm on their desire to retain the Welshman's services for another season as they compete for a Champions League qualification spot in the Premier League.

'All these big transfers are controversial for good or bad reasons,' said Casillas, 'but he is a player who decides games. I am sure there will be a new player with us before the transfer window closes.'

image: © jansolo09

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