Tottenham Transfers: 4 Possible Gareth Bale Replacements
He can match Cristiano Ronaldo in terms of physical attributes, but Gareth has a long way to go before he can be mentioned as equal to CR7.
Gareth’s productivity has never been better. If Spurs sell him in the summer for a gigantic transfer fee, here are four possible replacements.
4. Patrick Ebert, RAM, Real Valladolid
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images
Patrick Ebert has always had the pedigree. The 25-year-old was included in Horst Hrubesch's Germany squad that won the 2009 Euro Under-21 title.
In Ebert's last season for Hertha Berlin, his average Kicker match ranking was 199th out of 211.
When Hertha convincingly won the 2. Fußball-Bundesliga (2010-11), Patrick was on the outside looking in.
He had ruptured his ligaments during preseason. Meanwhile, teammate Nikita Rukavytsya (12) was second only to Alemannia Aachen's Zoltán Stieber in league assists (17).
Peter Parker, a Hertha Berlin supporter, spoke about Ebert's carefree approach to football (via B/R):
I live 10 minutes away from the Olympia Stadion and Hertha's training ground and a friend of mine lived in the same building Ebert did.
Let's say, he wasn't too keen on focusing 100 percent on football e.g. staying up late, parties and unhealthy food prior to match days.
As a matter of fact, I ran into him once at a kebab stand prior to a second division match and the kebab guy told me a few similar stories.
Patrick has been reborn as a Real Valladolid player, showing La Liga followers that he's an elite talent.
The one attribute that will make him a viable Premier League transfer target is his crossing. The flight, dip and accuracy is astounding.
He would be an ideal fit if Tottenham Hotspur sign a strong centre-forward who can lead the line and has an aerial presence—i.e. Leandro Damião, Christian Benteke or Adám Szalai.
Ebert has also scored five goals and has had some dazzling individual moments, which suggests he could play inside-out or be tasked with more scoring responsibilities.
Durability is certainly a concern but Spurs can always protect themselves contractually.
For a couple of million pounds, the pros outweigh the cons.
A = assist/s; SCPG = shots created per game; P% = passing percentage; C% = crossing percentage
3. André Schürrle, LF, Bayer Leverkusen
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There isn't much separating André Schürrle and Gareth Bale in the pace department.
André's playing style mirrors that of Bale. He runs past a few opposing players, should pass with two teammates free, but takes the shot anyways.
André has six goals from 81 shots whilst Stefan Kießling has netted 15 goals from 79 shots.
It sure puts Kießling's incredible season in perspective.
The centre-forward leads the team in assists because the left forward, who should pass the ball more, makes bone-headed decision after bone-headed decision like Russell Westbrook.
With that being said, Russell is dynamite and so is Schürrle.
Sooner rather than later, the German will start demanding to play as the No. 9—Arkadiusz Milik isn't going to like that.
2. Dimitri Payet, LF, Lille
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images
Who was the first player this season to reach 10 goals and assists in league play?
Lionel Messi? Nope. Cristiano Ronaldo? No. Juan Mata? Try again. Thomas Müller? Wrong.
It's Lille's wide forward Dimitri Payet, who is vindicating Damien Comolli's left-field comments about the Frenchman being more naturally gifted than Luka Modrić (via Sky Sports).
Dimitri has accumulated 20 total goals in Ligue 1 this season (10 goals and assists) compared to Gareth Bale's 16 in the Premier League (15 and one assist).
Is anyone comparing Payet to CR7? No.
1. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, WAM/CF, Saint-Étienne
David Rogers/Getty Images
Isn't Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang a centre-forward?
Not recently (he did start up front versus Stade Reims, but that was because Brandão wasn't playing).
PEA has been playing a wide forward role, even though he starts out as a wide attacking midfielder in the "3" of a 4-2-3-1.
Saint-Étienne have given him the license to be free like Cristiano Ronaldo.
To Les Verts, Aubameyang is Cristiano.
Pierre-Emerick has been superb as a No. 9 in the past, but he went through a Fernando Torres-esque stretch, which prompted a change of position for the Gabonese international.
G = goal/s; SPG = shots per goal; A = assist/s; SCPG = shots created per game
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