A lot of questions were asked when Real Madrid decided to splash out a reported €100 million (£85.3m) to sign Gareth Bale from Tottenham Hotspur last summer.
One of the biggest questions posed was how well would the Welsh international cope with being Cristiano Ronaldo’s sidekick. It was also doubtful whether the Portuguese star would feel comfortable knowing that an alleged more expensive player is playing alongside him.
Fortunately for Madrid, boss Carlo Ancelotti has found a system which suits both players and the duo have been in devastating form this season.
Bale was an outstanding individual while at Spurs, often lighting up White Hart Lane on his own. In the Spanish capital, he has become much more of a team player, but without losing that magic touch when needed.
Ronaldo has certainly been impressed with his debut season, and in an interview he told reporters that his relationship with Bale has grown as the season has progressed.
'He’s an excellent player. He’s adapted really well and he’s put in some amazing games in the Champions League, the league and the Copa del Rey. He scored a brilliant goal against Barcelona in the Cup. He has shown his quality', he said, quoted by Spanish paper AS.
'We speak to each other in English and we are close as teammates. I already liked him as a player before he joined and since getting to know him, I like him even more. We talk all the time and I will do anything I can to help him'.
Since swapping While Hart Lane for the Santiago Bernabeu, Bale has scored 14 goals and added a further 12 assists in 23 La Liga starts – becoming one of a select few to reach double figures in both goals and assists for the season.
Los Blancos' Copa Del Rey success over Barcelona was the 24-year-old's first major trophy of his career, and he has the chance to add to that when the Spanish giants face city-rivals Atletico Madrid in next week’s Champions League final.