Dawson: Bale is world's best

Bale scoops twin awards

Michael Dawson has added his voice to the growing Gareth Bale fan club, claiming his Tottenham team-mate is better than Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Spurs skipper was just the latest in a list of admirers to heap praise on the flourishing Welshman, who seems to have established himself as a genuine world-class performer this season.

And with another goal to celebrate against North London rivals Arsenal on Sunday, taking his goalscoring run to 10 in eight games in all competitions, Dawson feels Bale is the best in the world on present form.

"Gaz is up there with Ronaldo and Messi in terms of ability - he's one of the best players in the world at the moment, and probably the best in the world for me right now," he said.

"Some of the things he does would have Ronaldo blush. His goal this season against Norwich where he picked the ball up in his own half and dribbled past all those players before having the calmness and composure to put it in the bottom corner."

Having joined Tottenham in 2007 as a full-back, Bale has come on in leaps and bounds since being converted to an attacking winger under former boss Harry Redknapp.

And Dawson was quick to praise the 23-year-old's successful handling of a frustrating period in a Spurs shirt, with Bale having initially gone without a win in the first 24 games he featured in.

"He's been brilliant and credit to him because it hasn't been easy for him," he continued.

"He'll be the first to admit he found it difficult when he first came to Tottenham, people forget he moved here when he was 17."