Stephen Warnock told the Football Show on Sky Sports (22/02/21 at 11:05 am) that West Ham’s players were ‘frightened’ of Tottenham forward Gareth Bale on Sunday.
West Ham recorded a memorable victory against their rivals, with Bale starting the game from the bench and questions being raised as to why he wasn’t given a shot from the off.
Whenever Bale and West Ham are mentioned in the same sentence, his late long-range winner at Upton Park many years ago rings in the head of West Ham fans in an annoying fashion.
And on Sunday, when he was brought on at half-time, many of those same fans would have felt pretty uncomfortable watching the left-footed technician change the tone of the game.
Bale did provide an assist for Lucas Moura’s headed goal and his volley did hit the crossbar, but he was unable to change the result, as ex-Liverpool defender Warnock shared how he brought ‘fear’ to the table when he came on.
“He’s got that ability to take people on and to have quality,” said Warnock. “The big problem is can you trust him to play twice a week?
“Now, this is what he does really well. He might not be at his brilliant best. But what he has is his name. He brings fear.
“What I mean by that is retreating, retreating, retreating, retreating, retreating (Highlights five West Ham players running back when Bale gets on the ball).
“They are frightened and they know if Gareth Bale goes to knock it then you’re not catching him because he has that fear element within him.”
Well, Tottenham fans will be hoping Bale can bring the ‘fear’ during these next few weeks and months because they desperately need it.
Jose Mourinho’s side are sliding one way and the argument could rightly be made that the Real Madrid loanee should start.
Whilst Bale gets that starting shot in the Europa League, it’s the Premier League where the Spurs fans would like to see more of him.