Gareth Bale near the end of his career? Its future is unclear according to different media.
When Real Madrid and Gareth Bale decided to go their separate ways briefly in 2020, both sides did so with compelling reason and conviction.
Los Blancos, to cut costs, due to the pandemic (Bale’s salary is € 30m gross per year) and the Welshman, because he wanted playing time before this summer’s European Championship with Wales.
It was a risky transfer as Madrid didn’t have a lot of options in attack. The winger was under pressure to return to the same high performance level at a club where he initially exploded, before moving to Real Madrid. Bale has started only 10 of 37 Premier League games so far.
And the Welshman did not shine in the most demanding games in England and where he was supposed to emerge as a leader, such as in duels against Manchester City, Chelsea, United or Liverpool. His best performances have come against modest opponents (Brighton, Burnley, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Sheffield United) and Europa League teams (Wolfsberger and LASK).
New Tottenham manager Ryan Mason confirmed on Wednesday after losing to Aston Villa that Bale plays when it suits him best. “Gareth is an experienced man and knows his body. We spoke to each other and he thought it was better for him and his fitness not to start today,” he said after the player on loan from Real played 89 minutes against Wolves last Sunday, their most minutes on the pitch since returning to England.
The 31-year-old did not hide in the dressing room that he intended to push his fitness to the limit, always putting the European Championship first, and neither did he hide his intends to return to Real Madrid this summer to complete the remaining year of his contract at the new Santiago Bernabéu and then retire from football, as meda AS claim. Bale is reportedly not focused on another adventure as his time is up in Madrid at the age of 33. Whether Gareth Bale will hang up his boots in 2022 remains to be seen, but whatever happens he will be focused on Wales first at the European Championship next month.