Tuesday 7 February 2023 Dublin: 10°C
Bale is helped off by Real Madrid's doctors.
# bad decision
Bale ruled out of Champions League semi-finals as El Clasico start backfires
The Welshman, who has struggled with injuries throughout the season, was taken off in the first half of Sunday’s defeat to Barcelona.

REAL MADRID FORWARD Gareth Bale has been ruled out of their upcoming Champions League semi-finals against Atletico Madrid, suggesting their decision to rush him back against Barcelona has backfired.

The Blancos have confirmed that he will be out for at least three weeks with a calf muscle issue, which would see him return to fitness in the middle of May.

And therefore Bale, 27, will be absent in both legs of Madrid’s last four clash against fierce rivals Atletico, in what is a bitter blow after a difficult weekend for Zinedine Zidane’s men following their narrow 3-2 defeat against title rivals Barcelona.

A statement on Madrid’s website read: “Following the tests carried out on Gareth Bale by the Sanitas Medical Services, the player has been diagnosed with a grade 2 injury in his left calf.

His recovery will continue to be assessed.”

Bale was handed a starting berth by Zidane in Sunday’s Clasico but was replaced by Marco Asensio in the first half after sustaining the problem.

The injury comes as the latest setback in a campaign blighted by fitness issues for Bale, with the Wales star having missed a large chunk of winter period with an ankle problem.

He returned in March but was soon out of action after being sent off in Madrid’s heated 3-3 draw with Las Palmas in La Liga.

Bale will also be ruled out for Madrid’s Liga clashes against Deportivo La Coruna, Valencia, Granada, Sevilla and Malaga with his latest knock.

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