Why Julen Lopetegui's arrival could spell bad news for Gareth Bale

Gareth Bale’s Real Madrid future remains unclear and Julen Lopetegui is not a fan

Julen Lopetegui’s appointment at Real Madrid could spell bad news for Gareth Bale.

The Welshman’s future was already the subject of discussion before Lopetegui’s surprise appointment, with speculation that his five-year stay at the Bernabeu might be coming to an end.

And given his new boss’ comments three years ago, you would not bet against Bale leaving the Spanish capital before the window closes in August.

“A player at Real Madrid has to give 100% all the time,” Lopetegui is reported as saying in 2015.

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“If he [Gareth Bale] doesn’t then he might as well leave. La Liga is totally different to the Premier League.

“A player like that wouldn’t get into my team.”

That makes grim reading for Bale, who starred in last month’s Champions League final with a double against Liverpool, but will not be in Russia with Wales failing to qualify for the tournament.

Julen Lopetegui will be presented to the media as Real Madrid’s new head coach a day before he was due to be leading Spain in the World Cup.
Julen Lopetegui will be presented to the media as Real Madrid’s new head coach a day before he was due to be leading Spain in the World Cup.

Lopetegui’s desire to blood young Spanish players could prove another stumbling block for the 28-year-old.

He is a big fan of both Marco Asensio and Isco, two Real Madrid stars who are in and out of the starting line-up, and even remarked back in January that they were not playing enough.

Manchester United are regularly linked with a move for Bale, whilst Spurs have first refusal should he leave Real and the chances of a return to the Premier League – or certainly a departure from Madrid – have increased with this week’s news.

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