Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho has said he is looking forward to seeing how the media in Madrid react after Gareth Bale scored the winner in Sunday’s 2-1 victory against Brighton, his first goal since returning to the Premier League.
Bale left Spurs to join Real Madrid seven years ago but returned to the north London club on a season-long loan in September.
The Wales international won four Champions League titles and La Liga twice with Real, but divided opinion in Spain because of a perceived lack of commitment and poor injury record.
“I am pleased for him because he deserved the goal. When I have five minutes I am going to Safari to look at Madrid’s websites to see what they say,” Mourinho said after the game.
“He knows we care about him and we know he cares about us, the team and the club, Spurs. He’s the perfect fit, he’s very calm, very intelligent, he has good feelings.
“But he had bad feelings before because the training process was hard and his body was suffering a little bit. But we gave him what he needs. We gave him all this care as a whole — sports science, medical, my assistants, the other players — so I am very pleased for him to score this winning goal.”
Mourinho said Bale would start against the Bulgarian side but isn’t ready for a full 90 minutes in the Premier League yet.
“He doesn’t have 90 minutes of a Premier League match in his legs yet so we are using the Europa League to compliment his training process,” he added.
“We are using some matches in the Premier League when we decide to play him and, of course, the normal tendency for him will be to be better and better and better.
“He will start again on Thursday [against Ludogorets] and even in a Europa League match where the intensity is different to the Premier League. I will not play him for 90 minutes. I will have always this care with him until we feel that he is ready. But today, great personality, great impact, very important goal for us.”