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SOCCER

Gareth Bale rules out move to Getafe

The Wales forward had been linked with a move to the Coliseum but told Sky Sports he won’t be joining the Liga side next season.

Update:
Gareth Bale of Wales applauds their support after the UEFA Nations League League A Group 4 match between Wales and Netherlands at Cardiff City Stadium on June 08, 2022 in Cardiff, Wales.
Alex Livesey - DanehouseGetty

Gareth Bale has ruled out a move to Getafe after his contract with Real Madrid expires at the end of June. The Wales forward, who recently helped his country to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in 64 years, is eager to find a club in order to maintain his match readiness and reach the finals next November in peak fitness. It had been reported that Bale was on the verge of agreeing to join Getafe on a short-term deal, Azulones president Ángel Torres telling the audience during a 2022-23 kit presentation that the winger had been offered to his club, but Bale has now scotched that idea. “I’m not going to Getafe, that’s for sure” Bale said with a chuckle during a press conference.

Bale was also briefly linked with Atlético Madrid, but that possibility seems remote. The 32-year-old is keen to remain in Madrid if possible, to avoid uprooting his family and will likely be interested in any kind of short-term deal that would provide him with the match-time necessary to remain in shape for the World Cup. That said, Bale barely featured for Madrid during the 2021-22 season and yet still hit form for Wales when it mattered, scoring twice in a 2-1 victory over Austria in the playoff semi-finals and forcing the own goal that eventually sent the Dragons to Qatar.

However, despite his obvious importance to his country, who he guided to the semi-finals of Euro 2016, Wales manager Rob Page will be wary of relying a player with no competitive action whatsoever in the best part of six months at the World Cup. Bale will be selected in the squad of course, but both player and manager would prefer the talismanic forward to be active in the interim.

Ronaldo and Real Valladolid an option for Bale?

Getafe was a logical choice logistically and the southern Madrid-based side are one of four clubs in the capital that will compete in the top flight next season, and perhaps less of a stretch of the imagination as Bale turning out for Rayo. Now, though, the Welshman’s options in Madrid appear to be limited. There will be other Liga sides who may well consider a punt – newly promoted Real Valladolid, owned by Brazilian great Ronaldo, spring to mind – but in all likelihood Bale will have to look further afield for a short-term deal. Bale’s hometown club Cardiff City are currently considered the frontrunners, with MLS side DC United also credited with an interest, but there may yet be an unexpected twist.

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