Zidane ranks Tottenham winger Bale among Europe’s best

World Cup winner Zinidine Zidane believes Tottenham Hotspur winger Gareth Bale might be the best player in Europe – even above Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, the Daily Mirror has reported.

The newspaper adds that Zidane’s comments will only stoke Real Madrid’s interest in the Wales international, with Zidane, a Real Madrid legend, also holding a position of director of football at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Zidane was asked ahead of Madrid’s Champions League quarter-final against Galatasaray which player had impressed him most in the competition this season, and the former France international, who won the World Cup with Les Bleus in 1998, admitted that the player who had impressed him most this season was actually playing in the Europa League.

There are always players who are a cut above, take Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid for example,” Zidane said, adding: “The problem is this year the player who has impressed me most is not actually playing in the Champions League. He is playing in “the other cup” (Europa League), and that is Bale.

The former Juventus playmaker went on to say: “He’s perhaps not quite at the level of the other two, but he’s different. So personally I don’t think he’s far off. You can’t compare him. He’s unique, he makes things look easy, his pace is frightening.

Zidane was in the stadium to see Tottenham beat Lyon in the last round of the Europa League, saying: “He’s really impressed me. I’ve seen him two or three times live, including recently at Lyon, which wasn’t necessarily his best game, but every time he got the ball he can surprise you.

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