Dean Saunders says Gareth Bale trait reminds him of West Ham player, not Payet

Wales' Gareth Bale

Wales legend Dean Saunders says an aspect of Real Madrid star Gareth Bale's game reminds him of a West Ham United player.

Wales' Gareth Bale celebrates after scoring their first goalWales' Gareth Bale celebrates after scoring their first goal

Bale has led the Welsh to their first major tournament for half a century and is currently the most expensive footballer on the planet.

The Real Madrid star scored a free-kick in Wales' 2-1 win over Slovakia and followed that up with another free-kick in the 2-1 defeat to England on Thursday.

But Saunders, who scored 22 goals in 75 games for the Dragons, was not likening Bale's ability to that of West Ham's free-kick master Dimitri Payet.

West Ham's Andy CarrollWest Ham's Andy Carroll

'I mean look at his leap'

During his role as pundit on the BBC's coverage of the battle of Britain, Saunders compared Bale to none other than Andy Carroll after he went close with a header from 12 yards out.

"Bale had got everything he really has," Saunders said as Wales took a 1-0 lead into the half-time break.

"I mean look at this leap as the cross comes in, look how high he gets and the power he gets on the header, he's like Andy Carroll.

"So he's even added heading to his game, he got nine headed goals this season."

Wales' Gareth Bale celebrates scoring their first goalWales' Gareth Bale celebrates scoring their first goal

Bale's headed goals match Carroll's total

Saunders' comparison is the closest Carroll came to Euro 2016.

But in truth the big Geordie's club form for the Hammers did not really force the issue with Roy Hodgson despite some decent performances in the latter stages of the Premier League campaign.

Bale's nine headed goals from the 19 he scored in total in the last campaign is the same amount Carroll managed in the whole season.

France's Dimitri Payet celebrates at the end of the matchFrance's Dimitri Payet celebrates at the end of the match

Payet flying the West Ham flag

West Ham have been making the headlines at the Euros, though, thanks to their new hero Payet.

Stunning goals in back-to-back wins over Romania and Albania have tongues wagging but it's nothing new to Hammers fans who have been enjoying in his brilliance all season.

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