Since the calendar turned over to 2013, no player has dominated the English Premier League like Gareth Bale has.
Bale's spectacular form over the last three months has seen him hit the fast track to superstardom.
Not only has Bale's form been superb, but the form of his club, Tottenham Hotspur, has been red-hot as well. They seek a spot in the top four of the table—a spot that will give them a place in the UEFA Champions League next season.
Here is a game-by-game look at the mercurial rise in form that Bale has had in the first three months of 2013.
In his first match back from injury, Gareth Bale took to the pitch at Loftus Road to take on former manager Harry Redknapp and QPR.
The result against Redknapp's relegation fighters was one that Tottenham fans will try to forget when they look back on this season.
Bale attempted a match-high four shots, but neither he or any of his Spurs teammates could get the ball past QPR keeper Julio Cesar, who recorded seven saves in the draw.
Tottenham have showed no fear in recent memory against Manchester United. The January 20 clash at White Hart Lane between the two clubs was no different.
Manager Andre Villas-Boas reverted back to the 4-2-3-1 formation with Bale in his customary left wing position.
Against the league leaders, Bale managed to attempt seven shots.
But it was not his goal that equalized in the 90th minute for Spurs. The man responsible for that was Clint Dempsey. He sent White Hart Lane into an uproar with his goal in the third minute of stoppage time.
Bale was left out of the starting 11 for Tottenham's FA Cup fourth-round match with Leeds United the previous weekend, but he was back in the lineup for the visit to Carrow Road.
After a rather casual offensive effort for most of the match, Bale unleashed a piece of individual brilliance in the 80th minute to equalize the match for Spurs.
Bale took control of the ball at midfield and went on a blistering run towards the penalty area.
Once Bale reached the penalty area, he found a hole between two Norwich defenders and found the back of the net with a powerful left-footed shot.
Tottenham got back to their winning ways at The Hawthorns with a 1-0 win over West Brom.
Goran Popov was sent off in the 47th minute to put the host Baggies down to 10 men for the rest of the match.
Tottenham finally capitalized on their advantage in the 65th minute with a goal by the talented Welshman on their left wing.
Bale struck a shot with his left foot from just outside the penalty area that soared past West Brom keeper Ben Foster into the back of the net.
This was the first match where AVB employed Bale in a more fluid role in the center of the attacking trio, a role that Bale has flourished in for Spurs.
Six days after taking down West Brom, Tottenham welcomed Newcastle and their fresh crop of January signings to White Hart Lane.
This time it was Bale's talent for free kicks that took the EPL by storm. The Welshman delivered a goal in the fifth minute on a beautiful free kick.
The stunning goal was not all Bale had to offer that day in North London. He scored once again in the 78th minute to clinch the victory.
That match marked the first time in five matches that Bale had scored two or more goals in a single match.
The Gareth Bale Free Kick Spectacular continued five days later in the UEFA Europa League round of 32.
Bale's first free-kick goal came right before halftime. He sent a dipping shot into the bottom left corner of the net past Lyon keeper Remy Vercoutre.
Bale once again sent the crowd at White Hart Lane into an uproar at the end of the second half with a second stunning free kick that was blasted past the outstretched arm of Vercoutre.
In between the two free-kick goals, Bale took eight shots and touched the ball 67 times in possession.
Just one week later, Tottenham was able to escape the Stade Gerland with a late goal and a spot in the Europa League round of 16.
Moussa Dembele, not Bale, was the player who was the hero for Spurs that night. He scored in the 90th minute to earn advancement in Europe for Spurs.
Bale was credited with an assist on the goal, but in reality it was Dembele who did all the work.
After the excitement of advancing to the round of 16 in the Europa League, Tottenham faced a London derby against West Ham the following Monday.
Bale opened and closing the scoring in the five-goal shootout at Upton Park with goals in the 13th and 90th minute.
Bale's first goal was a classic strike with his left foot that slid across the West Ham goal past Jussi Jaaskelainen.
The second goal scored by Bale sent the crowd at Upton Park into a sense of disbelief. He rocketed a shot past Jaaskelainen into the upper right corner of the net to win the match.
The most important match of Bale's impressive streak of form came on March 3, when Arsenal visited White Hart Lane in the North London derby.
Bale kicked off the scoring in the North London derby that day by splitting in between two Arsenal defenders and slotting home a goal in the 37th minute.
Bale's goal would not have happened without a beautiful pass from Gylfi Sigurdsson that escaped the reach of any Arsenal player getting back on defense.
Just two minutes later, Aaron Lennon replicated Bale's run into the penalty area on his goal.
Four days after taking down Arsenal in the North London derby, Tottenham renewed their European rivalry with Inter Milan in the Europa League round of 16.
Once again taking up the role of the central attacking midfielder, Bale found his way into the penalty area and unleashed a headed shot in the sixth minute that found its way past Inter keeper Samir Handanovic.
Nine minutes after putting his club ahead, Bale picked up a yellow card for simulation, a booking that almost cost Spurs their spot in the Europa League quarterfinals.
With Bale absent from the lineup, Spurs were forced into extra time a week later at the San Siro and barely escaped on an away goal by Emmanuel Adebayor.
Tottenham and Liverpool played in one of the most entertaining matches of the season at Anfield on March 10.
The goal-scoring magic of Bale that Spurs had benefited from in the previous eight matches dried up, as the Welshman could only manage an assist in the five-goal match.
Bale's cross in the 45th minute connected with the head of Jan Vertonghen. As the Belgian's header found the back of the net, Bale added yet another assist to his growing tally.
Tottenham were expected to bounce back from their loss to Liverpool with a win over London rival Fulham at White Hart Lane.
Instead they were shut out by the Cottagers.
In the loss, Bale could only get off four shots and he was rather ineffective for parts of the match.
The loss marked the first time that Tottenham lost consecutive matches since November, when they fell to Manchester City and Arsenal.
All statistics courtesy of WhoScored.com
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