When Gareth Bale scored an incredible goal for Real Madrid to win the Copa Del Rey for Los Merengues v their eternal rivals Barcelona it was the dawning of a new Galactico. That night in 2014 now looks like a distant memory.
Tonight, as Real Madrid toiled against Juventus in the Champions League, the Welshman was hauled off at half-time for Marcos Asensio.
It marked yet another poor moment in what has been a tough season in the Spanish capital for the 28-year-old. A tough season, that may be his last.
It is being reported that Bale could be sold by Real this summer, as they grow tired of his physical ailments and poor performances.
One team that has been linked with his signature is Tottenham Hotspur. Bale, of course, joined Real from Spurs and was a hero at White Hart Lane prior to his switch.
In recent weeks there has been talk that he could return to the club, but tonight should make Daniel Levy’s mind up – there is no place at Spurs for Bale.
Undoubtedly he is an immense talent. But the fact is, his fitness and form are not up to scratch compared to the current Tottenham team.
He is good enough, of that, there is no doubt, but consistency is everything for Mauricio Pochettino. Take Harry Kane for example. His ankle injuries, which would rule most out for months, heal like splinters. Bale is made of glass in comparison.
Which would be fine if he was not coming in and immediately becoming Tottenham’s most expensive player and best-paid.
That would, in itself, upset the applecart that Levy has so carefully arranged at Spurs. If he was then spending most of his time on the treatment table or not performing in the big games it would be a disaster for morale at Spurs.
Tonight was the night that Levy and Tottenham will surely have ended any thought of bringing Bale back to North London at this moment in time.
Put the chequebook away Daniel, it will not be needed on this occasion.