Never-ending wizardry story, Messi's here to excite

El Loco sizes up the arrival of Gareth Bale and his partnership with Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid while pipping Lionel Messi to be the La Liga's all-time top scorer this season


The big story in Spain now is Gareth Bale.

The 24-year-old Welsh wizard joined Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in the summer for a world record transfer fee of €100 million.

Bale is looking forward to make his debut for los Blancos, even as early as the away match against Villarreal at El Madrigal on Sunday (5am, Malaysian time), wearing the No.11 shirt.

Real fans are going gaga over Bale. And they can't wait and see how he will fare partnering superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, for instance.

Can these two attackers form an awesome combination that can instill that real fear to the opponents?

This is one the questions Real fans, including here in Malaysia, are asking.

They hope the two can steer Real to the Primera Liga and Champions League triumphs this season.

While Real are buzzing with Bale and company, bitter rivals Barcelona are quietly but surely have settled down with their attacking aspect.

Never mind about the shaky defence. Remember, Barca were unsuccessful in getting at least one quality centre-back in the last transfer window.

The duo of Lionel Messi and Neymar seem to have settled down fine. They are beginning to click.

The bad news for the opponents is that both are also in great form - based on their performances for Argentina and Brazil in midweek.

Neymar, who joined Barca from Santos for €57 million, had a hand in all three goals, scoring one beauty himself in Brazil's 3-1 win over Portugal in a friendly.

Messi struck twice - from penalties - in Argentina's 5-2 win over Paraguay in a World Cup qualifier to book a spot for the finals in Brazil next year.

It seems that the sky is the limit with Messi.

When it appears he has played his finest season, he does one better the next.

Just when it seemed there were no more records to break, he surprises everyone by smashing another.

At only 26, Messi could become the all-time top goal-scorer in the Primera Liga this season itself!

A couple of seasons ago it would have seemed hard to believe he could reach the legendary Zarra's record – who scored 251 goals in the space of 15 years in Athletic Bilbao.

Nobody has been able to beat the record since the Basque striker played his last game in Primera Liga in 1956.

Messi has been the league's top scorer six times and is 32 goals short of becoming crowned as the greatest goal-machine of all time.

The 32-goal target, which in past seasons would practically assure the Pichichi award, should be in Messi's reach IF he stays injury-free.

He has already scored five goals in three league matches making him the leading scorer thus far. This means he has scored 95 goals in the last two years.

Messi is now sixth in the all-time goal charts – four goals behind Cesar, eight behind Alfredo Di Stefano, nine off Raul and 15 off Hugo Sanchez with 234 goals.

Expect Messi to strike yet again when Barcelona entertain Sevilla at Nou Camp on Sunday (3am, Malaysian time).

In other Real Madrid news, Iker Casillas' girlfriend Sara Carbonero, who is carrying his baby, has shed doubt on the goalkeeper's future at the Bernabeu during a lingerie fashion event.

"I don't know whether my child will be born in Madrid or outside Spain; now's not the time to talk about that," Carbonero told El Pais, when asked about the upcoming birth of her baby.

Having been left on the bench by Carlo Ancelotti, speculation has been rife in recent times about Casillas' future.

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque only fanned the flames after claiming his captain had already "half-decided" what he was going to do about his future.

If there is no change to his status over the coming months, Casillas, 32, looks likely to seek an exit from Real in the January transfer window.

So, where will be the baby born?