SOCCER | GARETH BALE

"Bale is a fanatical Welshman" - Barnett ahead of Real Madrid striker's 100th Wales Cap

Gareth Bale’s agent Jonathan Barnett has shared an anecdote that revealed just how special Wales is to the Real Madrid player.

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"Bale is a fanatical Welshman" - Barnett ahead of Real Madrid striker's 100th Wales Cap
PAUL CHILDS Action Images via Reuters

The Wales national team has always been special for Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale, so much so that he has often been criticized in Madrid for putting Wales way above his club.

Bale, who has not played for Madrid since late August due to a knee injury, was called up by Wales caretaker manager Robert Page for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Belarus and Belgium, with the Cardiff-born forward set to make his 100th appearance for his country on Saturday.

Ahead of his century milestone against Belarus, Bale’s agent Jonathan Barnett has shared an anecdote that revealed just how special Wales is to the player.

Bale has won four Champions League titles with Real Madrid, but according to Barnett, leading Wales to their second-ever World Cup, and first since 1958, would be the ultimate achievement for the Welshman to cap off his career.

Soccer Football - World Cup - UEFA Qualifiers - Wales Training - Vale Resort, Hensol, Wales, Britain - November 9, 2021 Wales' Gareth Bale during training Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

Barnett on Bale’s Welsh obsession

“If he gets to the World Cup with Wales, I think that will be his crowning glory,” said Barnett.

“From the first day I met him and his father, he said to us how special Wales was.

“When we spoke to him, he had the possibility to play for England. He said, ‘Never say that again if you want to be my agent!’

"He is a ­fanatical Welshman.”

Real Madrid coach Ancelotti defends Bale

Bale had once again come in for criticism in Madrid due to the fact that he returned to availability for Wales for these upcoming World Cup qualifiers despite having not played for Los Blancos for more than two months due to injury.

But Real coach Carlo Ancelotti has defended the Welshman, arguing that it will be good for him to get some game time in with Wales before returning to availability for Madrid after the international break.