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Gareth Bale defended after controversial 'Wales, golf, Madrid' celebration

The Real Madrid forward’s agent responded to criticism of the player.

Gareth Bale (file pic).
Gareth Bale (file pic).
Image: PA Archive/PA Images

GARETH BALE’S AGENT Jonathan Barnett said the Real Madrid star’s “WALES. GOLF. MADRID… IN THAT ORDER” flag celebration was “meant for the media” amid backlash.

Bale caused a stir in Cardiff on Tuesday, when he was pictured laughing and celebrating in front of a fan-made banner after Wales qualified for Euro 2020.

Tipped to leave Madrid and criticised for his priorities amid his love for golf, Wales fans have adopted the chant, ”Wales, golf, Madrid”, which was heard during the international break.

Spanish newspaper Marca’s front page on Thursday read: “DISRESPECTFUL. WRONG. UNGRATEFUL. IN THAT ORDER”.

But speaking to ESPN, Barnett insisted there were “no worries” for Bale ahead of his return to Madrid.

Bale, who has not featured for Madrid since October, is set to appear for the club’s La Liga meeting against Real Sociedad at the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday.

The 30-year-old has scored two goals in seven appearances across all competitions this season.

While Bale’s agent isn’t concerned about the aftermath of the banner, former Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon believes it could have been the final straw. 

“It’s going to difficult for Bale now because it was very childish of him to pose behind that banner,” Calderon told The Athletic.

“Fans are very angry because of course they didn’t like that, bearing in mind he has hardly played for the team this season then he goes off on international duty with Wales and plays in two matches. It’s a difficult situation for Zidane and he won’t be happy with Bale for posing with that banner.

“Bale hasn’t done himself any favours with this. He’s adding fuel to the fire and it’s going to be difficult for Zidane to include him in the starting line-up and also the bench.

Bale has been at Madrid for many years now and doesn’t appear to have integrated with his team-mates. He doesn’t speak any Spanish so that’s a problem in terms of communicating with the fans and the press. He’s also very fragile and has bad luck with injuries.

“The fact is he arrived at Real Madrid with a higher transfer fee than Cristiano Ronaldo. That was always going to be a problem because people thought he was going to be better than Ronaldo and score more goals than him and that’s impossible. Also Bale’s relationship with Zidane hasn’t been the best one.”

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