Zinedine Zidane hopes to have Gareth Bale back for next month’s Champions League final against Juventus.
The Welshman hasn’t played since last month’s defeat to Barcelona, where he limped off after suffering a calf tear.
Fears were raised that Bale would miss the rest of the season, including a potential homecoming in Cardiff on June 3. Los Blancos have since progressed to the final, of course, and Zidane is hopeful the 27-year-old will be healthy in time.
"At the moment Gareth is recovering, we have time before the final," the Frenchman said after his team overcame Atletico Madrid in the semi-final, via the Mirror.
”I hope we will have him back before then, it is better that he plays a little bit."
Bale took to Twitter to congratulate his teammates, posting a photo of him carrying out exercises in a swimming pool.
But, while Zidane hopes Bale will be ready to play against the Italians, there’s certainly no guarantee he will start even if he is fully fit.
Isco has shone in Bale’s absence and scored the goal on Wednesday that effectively booked Real’s place in the final.
And so Zidane would be wise not to change his team in Cardiff, even if that means leaving Bale out.
Bale has had an immensely frustrating season, having missed three months due to an ankle injury.
According to transfermarkt, the former Tottenham Hotspur man has suffered 11 separate injuries since his arrival in Spain four years ago. He’s missed 27 matches this season, having sustained four different injuries across the entire campaign.
Real would have known that Bale was injuries when they paid Spurs £86 million for him in 2013. But they couldn’t have envisioned things would be so bad.
What a leading doctor said about Bale in 2013
Los Blancos were warned about signing Bale by a leading Spanish doctor shortly after his arrival. The Spanish club announced that the Wales international had a “small chronic disc bulge” in October 2013, which prompted Dr Avelino Parajon to call the decision to sign Bale an “error”.
“If Real Madrid have signed Gareth Bale knowing about this protrusion, they have committed an error,” Parajon told Marca, via the Daily Mail.
“That is not to say that tomorrow it can be operated on and he can continue playing, like has happened many times.
“But if he already has problems with protruding discs, that indicates that it is not a one-off.
“When a person has those problems at that age, it suggests that he has a great possibility of suffering herniated discs and symptoms arising from that over time. It is a bad sign for any athlete.”
Four years on and injuries have continued to affect Bale. An almighty shame.
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