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Dublin: 13 °C Thursday 9 July, 2020

Gareth Bale was booed by Real Madrid's fans last night

Rafa Benitez has backed the Wales international to shine this season after a difficult 2014-15 campaign.

Bale endured a difficult season last year.
Bale endured a difficult season last year.

REAL MADRID COACH Rafa Benitez has defended Gareth Bale after the Welshman was once more jeered by his own team’s fans during the 2-1 friendly win over Galatasaray on Tuesday.

The former Tottenham star endured a difficult 2014-15 campaign in which he was heavily criticised and he again failed to impress versus the Istanbul giants.

Benitez’s decision to play Bale in a central role during pre-season has not made life any easier for the 26-year-old, yet the Madrid coach is confident he will be a key figure in 2015-16.

“If you analyse Bale’s movements, you’ll see they give the team respite,” Benitez told AS.

“If he had scored against Galatasaray, people would be saying what a great game he had.

“Logically there will be debate over Isco, Gareth and James. We are looking to forge an understanding between them.

“Isco and James elaborate play between the lines, but not Gareth. He creates spaces and looks to makes runs behind the defence.”

Bale was being linked with a move to Manchester United earlier this summer, but Madrid have been adamant they have no intention of letting go of the winger.

He netted 13 goals in 31 La Liga appearances last season after scoring 15 goals in 27 league games in his maiden campaign.

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