The Real Madrid and Wales forward Gareth Bale has been giving several anecdotes from his time at the European Championships in France last summer. Much of this was to do with his involvement with his national team but there were also some about his teammates in Spain.
Had Madrid players heard of Wales?
In an exclusive interview with 'Wales Online' one of the questions he was asked was regarding what his Madrid players knew about his home country. He replied joking:
"I think they knew Wales existed, they just didn’t think we were very good,” before adding, "But now we’re above most of their countries in the world rankings so, you know!”
Welsh jokers and vanity revealed
The star who only recently returned to action following injury also revealed some things about his national colleagues. The biggest wind-up merchants of the squad were Joe Ledley and Wayne Hennessey, Gunter was the team DJ and the worst dressed he considered to be Ledley, due to his poor taste in trainers. When it came to vanity, an honest Bale suggested it may be him:
"Umm, maybe me a little bit. I mean I have to put my ponytail in before a game."
Vain he may be, but modesty seemed to be one of the take-away messages from the interview. When asked about comparisons to Welsh greats such as Ryan Giggs and John Charles he responded:
“Ryan Giggs was my hero, the way he played, left footed and Welsh like me, I grew up watching him. And even though John Charles was a bit before my time I’ve heard enough stories, seen enough old footage [...] to know how much of a legend he was.
“I genuinely don’t think of myself like that. I’m just trying to do my best for my country, trying to get our county to the best level it can be – if that leads me personally to that kind of level, then great, but it’s not the focus.”
One of the enduring images of the player at the Euros was when his ponytail came loose, freeing his long hair. And this, of course, resulted in plenty of fun being had by teammates and fans through memes:
“My friends sent me all the pictures when that happened, don’t worry about that - Tarzan, Nicholas Cage. I have to double knot it or triple knot it now.”
The full interview is available at Walesonline.com where Bale also speaks about his daughter's Spanish accent, his favourite match of the Championships and much, much more.
- Roque Mesa1007Passes
*Update 23 de febrero de 2017