Few would have been expecting Andros Townsend to have the impact on the Tottenham first team that he has done and fewer would have been expecting him to star for England in the final round of World Cup qualifiers.
Well Townsend is sticking his hand up for the role in a big way but he’s got a fair way to go before he can be considered in the same bracket as Bale, someone who commanded a greater transfer fee than Cristiano Ronaldo.
There are similarities because Townsend is just as quick and plays exactly the same way that Bale did on the right wing. However, they are similarities that Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas is playing down.
"It is early beginnings for Andros with his life at the club. Gareth's influence grew to be immense in the last season. It is early days for Andros - He gives us so many attacking options because he is able to take the team forward with his driving ability and link-up play, crossing, assisting. It was another great performance, like we saw for his country," said AVB.
He can use his pace to turn and beat the full back before pulling the ball back to another player or he’s good enough to control possession at full speed, before cutting inside to unleash a shot from his stronger left foot.
The trick for Townsend is consistency and if he finds that consistency, he’ll have a much better chance of matching Bale’s impact at the club last season.
He’s bagged two goals for the club in all competitions this season and has a strike for England from the last round of World Cup qualifiers. Not only has his goal tally got to improve to get closer to Bale, it’s his all round game from his passing to his assists.
It’s also important that he’s able to reinvent himself because he will be challenged at the top level. Sooner or later, sides are going to find a way of playing against him and keeping him quiet, which means Townsend will have to find another way to be effective.
Here’s what fans are making of the Townsend – Bale comparisons via Twitter.
Everytime Townsend gets the ball he looks dangerous, he cuts inside he wants to shoot. He is taking over the role Bale played. #Thfc— ⚽ Jack Benson ⚽ (@JackBenson_Thfc) October 20, 2013
Think spurs have been well lucky that they've let a quality winger go in bale to then have Townsend come in and perform how his performed.— Rob Bryan (@RobBryan1987) October 21, 2013
this Townsend dude wants to be the new Bale huh? Good luck with the underachieving— doubleO7afenee (@afeni007) October 21, 2013
If Townsend has a couple more good games I'm sure those deluded sp*rs fans will start comparing him with Bale.— Askar sultan (@askargooner) October 21, 2013
Townsend'll be the next Bale. Just hope he doesn't get a diving habit.— Lee Xuan Yi (@xuanyi7) October 21, 2013
Just watched Match of the Day... Andros Townsend is the real deal. Looks like a young Bale... We'll see.— Youngblood Dilla (@E_Dilla) October 21, 2013
Townsend is lighting it up. Bale might be forgotten a lot more quickly than people thought.— Ben Froughi (@BenHasSpoken) October 21, 2013
BREAKING: Real Madrid set to offer £50 million + Bale for Andros Townsend!— Daniel Levy (@DanielLevySpurs) October 20, 2013
Andros Townsend is better than Gareth Bale.— PremFace (@EPLfanzzzZZZ) October 21, 2013
image: © Jan S0L0