Tottenham attacker Gareth Bale admits that even he does not know exactly how his free kicks fly into the back of the net on a regular basis. Follow GOAL.COM on Twitter
The Welshman won the PFA Player and Young Player of the Year awards on Sunday, becoming the first player to pick up both accolades in the same season since Cristiano Ronaldo back in 2007.
His set piece technique is often compared to the Real Madrid star but the 23-year-old was at a loss when asked to explain what he does to manipulate the ball in such a way.
"It's hard to explain what I do. You use everything - the valve on the ball, pressing it down into the floor, everything. Then you just keep practicing the technique and I've been practicing it for a while now," he told reporters. "I think the first one to do it was Juninho at Lyon. Obviously Ronaldo then took it to the next level. It's something that works but do I know what the ball is going to do? No - I haven't a clue!"
He added, "You can hit it right and then it goes left. Sometimes it pays off, sometimes it looks stupid, but it's obviously a great weapon to have. It's one of those things that can be the best thing in the world or the worst. Hopefully I can score a few more goals from it."
Part of the trick during Bale's free kicks is to intimidate the opposing goalkeeper but the former Southampton man says this is something that happens unintentionally.
"I'm not too sure if I scare or intimidate teams," he mused. "I know if I strike it well, it's got a good chance of troubling the goalkeeper and going in, so it's a good weapon to have.
"For me it's been a case of constant hard work. It's not just the last couple of years. It's also from the years before. I feel I've grown up as a person, as a player. It's just about your motivation in the game. Thankfully I've got that and hopefully there is more to come."
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