Gareth Bale appears to be on the verge of leaving Real Madrid after coach Zinedine Zidane revealed the Spanish giants are in talks with an unnamed club about a transfer.
Zidane confirmed the Wales international was left out of Real’s matchday squad to face Bayern Munich in the International Champions Cup in Houston on Saturday night because “the club is working on his departure”.
The Frenchman also said he hopes a deal for Bale can be struck soon “for everyone’s sake”.
Zidane, whose side were beaten 3-1 by Bayern, said in quotes reported on his club’s official website: “He wasn’t included in the squad because the club is working on his departure and that’s why he didn’t play.
“We’ll have to see what happens in the coming days. We’ll have to see if it goes through tomorrow, if it does then all the better. Let’s hope, for everyone’s sake, that it happens soon. The club is dealing with the club that he’ll move to.”
Bale joined Real for a then world-record £85million from Tottenham in 2013 and, despite being hit by a series of injuries, has helped the Spanish powerhouses win four Champions League titles, LaLiga and a host of other trophies.
However, his future at the Bernabeu has been the source of plenty of speculation in recent times, with the likes of Manchester United, Tottenham, Bayern and Inter Milan among the clubs having been linked with his services.
Zidane did not reveal where Bale’s possible destination might be but said: “The situation will change and it’s for the best for everyone.”
The Frenchman also insisted he has “nothing against” 30-year-old Bale, who has not always been an automatic starter under Zidane at Real.
Zidane added: “It’s nothing personal. There comes a time when things are done because they need to be done.
“I’ve not got anything against him. We have to make decisions and change things, that’s all there is to it. You’re aware of the situation and there’ll be a change to it. I don’t know if this will happen in 24 or 48 hours’ time.
“The situation will change and it’s for the best for everyone. That’s how things go.
“I speak with the club, we’ve got decisions to make and it’s a decision that’s been made by the coach and the player. Let’s see how things play out.”
21 players in Real Madrid’s history have scored 100 goals across all competitions for the club.— Squawka Football (@Squawka) July 21, 2019
Gareth Bale is one of them. 🐉 pic.twitter.com/atm0Yftq3x
Bale’s agent told ESPN FC there was “nothing more” to add regarding the Welshman’s future, but did not hold back on his view of Zidane.
“Zidane is a disgrace to speak like that about someone who has done so much for Real,” Barnett said.
“If and when Gareth goes it will be because it is in the best interest of Gareth and nothing to do with Zidane pushing.”
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Bayern Munich spoiled Eden Hazard’s Real Madrid debut, downing the Spanish giants 3-1 in a friendly in Houston Saturday despite goalkeeper Sven Ulreich’s sending off.
Corentin Tolisso, Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry had given Bundesliga champions Bayern a comfortable 3-0 lead before recent Real Madrid signing Rodrygo grabbed a consolation goal with a brilliant free kick.
That followed Ulreich’s departure late on for a foul on Brazilian teen Rodrygo outside the area.
Rodrygo, Luka Jovic and Ferland Mendy all made their debuts for rebuilding Real, all coming on at half-time as Zinedine Zidane changed his entire side.
Hazard’s first outing in a Madrid jersey since his high-priced move from Chelsea had dominated the headlines.
But despite getting a starting nod he made little impact at the NRG Stadium.
It needed a stellar display from Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to keep Los Blancos at bay, but Bayern led at the interval thanks to Tolisso’s 15th-minute strike.
Thomas Muller freed Kingsley Coman whose cross made it to Tolisso who was denied by Real Madrid keeper Thibaut Courtois on his first attempt but slotted home the rebound.
Karim Benzema let a golden chance go begging in the 43rd, meeting a cross from Isco but knocking his effort wide.
Neuer came up with another impressive save just before the interval, diving to his right to grab Luka Modric’s effort from 10 yards out.
Courtois fended off a rocket from Coman in first-half injury time to keep Bayern from stretching their advantage before the break.
While Madrid applied plenty of pressure, Hazard was circumspect, often opting to pass off to his new team-mates.
The closest the 28-year old Belgian came to his first Real goal was in the 39th minute, when he found space on the left and bent a shot toward the far post only for Neuer to punch it away.
Zidane’s wholesale changes at the interval did nothing to further Madrid’s cause, even though they controlled possession early in the second half.
Lewandowski doubled Bayern’s lead in the 67th controlling a high ball from Niklas Sule, turning and firing into the bottom corner.
Two minutes later Madrid gave the ball away deep in their own end and an unmarked Gnabry was able to control the ball and fire past Keylor Navas in goal.
Zinedine Zidane ‘hopes’ that Gareth Bale will be out of the exit door sooner rather than later, having revealed Real Madrid are busy trying to secure him a move away from the club.
The Wales star did not feature in Madrid’s opening preseason game against Bayern Munich, with Los Blancos falling to a 3-1 defeat in Houston.
Bale had seen any remaining influence at the club evaporate once Zidane was re-appointed as manager in March, but this is the first time that the Frenchman has been so open about the player’s future.
Though Zidane stresses his decision is not personal, the end is nigh at the Bernabeu for a forward who only last year was named man-of-the-match against Liverpool as Real won the Champions League trophy for a third time in a row.
“Bale did not play because he is very close to leaving,” Zidane said, per ESPN. “We hope he leaves soon. It would be best for everyone. We are working on his transfer to a new team.
“I have nothing personal against him, but there comes a time where things are done because they must be done, I have to make decisions. We have to change.
“The exit is the coach’s decision, and also of the player, who knows the situation.
“The situation will change, I do not know if in 24 or 48 hours, but it will, and it’s a good thing for everyone.”