Pre-season matches are the practice matches that are held between various renowned football clubs, before the inauguration of the new season, for a better start.
Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has claimed that Gareth Bale told him that that he did not want to play in their UEFA Champions League ties against Manchester City on Friday.
Bale, who has had problems with the Real Madrid management and has often expressed his dissatisfaction over his treatment by Zidane, was left out of the Manchester-bound squad to add fresh chapters in the ongoing rif.
“There is a relationship of respect between player and coach,” Zidane said in a press conference on Thursday as quoted by AFP (accessed via PTI).
“He preferred not to play, nothing more, and the rest is between me and him,” he added.
Zidane said that it was not a tactical but a personal decision that saw Bale out of Madrid’s squad which will be looking to overturn a 1-2 first-leg deficit.
Without going into much details of what was the decision about, the former France international said that “there are things that have to stay in the changing room”.
The latest development has added another low to what has already been a turbulent season for the 31-year-old Welsh man. At one point of time, he was overlooked citing injury concerns, while the player appeared in full throttle with his national team everytime he got the opportunity.
Bale has remained in the sidelines in most part of the recently-concluded La Liga season and at one point was not even training with other players. He started in only of Madrid’s last 11 matches since the top-flight football resumed following the COVID-19 hiatus.
Despite being a subject of numerous rumoured move, Madrid had refused to let Bale go. In August last year, the Real Madrid board had blocked his lucrative move of to China and said that he would remain a Madrid player till his contract runs out.
On being asked about his future, Zidane echoed the management’s decision and said, “Gareth Bale is a Real Madrid player, nothing has changed and I respect him like everyone else.”
Madrid’s contract with Bale runs until January 2022 on a weekly wage of around £650,000.