Motherwell: Jake Hastie on Gareth Bale, autographs & contract talks

By Scott MullenBBC Sport Scotland

"I still watch him now and try to replicate him. Before games, I go on to YouTube and watch some of his clips and a couple of his goals."

Inspiration can be found in the most unusual places in football. The training ground, the moment of genius of a team-mate, or even a hair-dryer team-talk from an irate manager.

For Motherwell's Jake Hastie, it is in watching online videos of his idol and Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale.

The 19-year-old has shot to prominence since returning to Fir Park from a loan spell at Alloa Athletic, scoring four goals and creating one in just five games.

However, Well fans thinking the blistering runs and aggressive attacking play are all down to him would be mistaken.

"I looked up to Gareth Bale a lot when I was younger," Hastie told BBC Scotland ahead of Sunday's Scottish Premiership match with Hearts.

"When he was at Spurs in the Premier League before he made his move to Real Madrid, that's when I really focused on him.

"Now, there's stuff he does that I try and replicate - especially his explosive runs. When I pick up the ball, I'll try and go to beat two or three players like he does.

"I always do it then I'll watch him to see how I can work on my game and bring in certain aspects of his. I want to try and make something happen like he does."

Jake Hastie
Jake Hastie has scored four goals in five games since returning to Motherwell in January

Autographs, pictures & living the dream

It is not often the comparison is made between a Motherwell youth academy player and the man who in 2013 held the world's biggest transfer fee at £85.3m.

But the impact he has made at Fir Park cannot be questioned.

Upon returning from Alloa, his goals, assists and dynamism have helped drive Stephen Robinson's side to five Premiership wins in a row.

Hastie, who spent the first half of the season at the Championship club with four goals in 27 games, admits even he has been surprised by his rapid ascent.

"It's like a dream come true," he said. "I came up through the academy from the age of nine and this has been my dream to break through. I just want to keep doing that.

"My friend's little brother plays with one of the younger age groups, so I went down to see him. I then got out the car and people are asking for autographs and pictures.

"It made me stand back. It blew me away a wee bit."

Motherwell's Hastie a great kid - Robinson

'I don't want to go anywhere'

Hastie's current contract at the Lanarkshire club runs out in the summer with negotiations ongoing over an extension.

While a conclusion has yet to be reached, the forward's mind already seems made up.

"I don't want to go anywhere," he said. "I want to stay here, keep my feet on the ground and keep progressing.

"I've been lucky to come in straight away. Hopefully I can keep doing what I'm doing."

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