Gareth Bale’s hat-trick in the Club World Cup semi-final match against Kashima Antlers took him to 27 goals for the current calendar year which is his personal best over his career. The weight of expectations on the goal-scoring front has increased for the winger since Ronaldo’s departure over the summer. While reaching the legendary heights of his ex-teammate’s exploits may not happen, Gareth Bale will have the opportunity to assume the leading role in Real Madrid’s offense. His 2018 goals were broken down as follows:
- La Liga - 18 (10 home, 8 Away)
- Champions League - 5 (1 Home, 2 Away, 2 Neutral)
- Club World Cup - 3 (Neutral)
- Copa del Rey - 1 (Away)
His most productive month this year was in May where he scored six goals in five games including the brace in the Champions League final during which he scored arguably his greatest goal yet.
Including the Champions League final, Bale had six multiple goal performances comprised of five braces and one hat-trick. The remainder of his goals (14) were solitary strikes meaning he scored in a total of 20 matches (having participated in 48). 2019 could be an even better year for Gareth Bale as the team finds its footing under Solari and improves offensively. Attacking dynamism has been a sore spot throughout the current season and finding a way to unlock both the team’s and Bale’s goalscoring will be key going forward. For the 2018-19 season, Bale currently sits one goal behind Benzema (11) with ten goals to his name.