Gareth Bale will miss Wales’ last two World Cup qualifiers against Georgia and the Republic of Ireland after suffering a calf strain.
It’s an all-too familiar story for the 28-year-old, who could be about for a month with his latest injury.
Real Madrid claimed Bale missed the win over Espanyol due to tiredness but it turns out they were just hiding the truth.
According to Marca, Bale has missed 66 games for Real Madrid since his then-record move from Tottenham Hotspur in 2013.
The talent is unmistakeable, but the Welshman’s wretched injury record has really held him back from being a huge success in Spain.
Bale’s absence from Chris Coleman’s squad for Friday’s match against Georgia and next Monday’s home tie against Ireland is a major blow.
Wales, currently second in Group D, still haven’t booked their place in Russia and their fate could be decided in a winner-takes-all contest against third-placed Ireland in the final group game.
Giggs explains why Bale is always injured
Wales legend Ryan Giggs believes Bale’s wretched injury history - he’s suffered thigh, hamstring, calf, ankle and knee problems in his Madrid career - boils down to the strain his physicality places on his body.
Bale has bulked up considerably since leaving England and Giggs believes it’s a combination of that and the challenges he receives from opposing defenders that is causing his body to break down.
“When you look at Bale and the physical specimen he is, he is always going to be putting his body under pressure, especially with the sort of challenges he comes up against from other players,” Giggs told Sky Sports.
Giggs: Bale needs to make changes
The Manchester United hero believes Bale needs to make changes, both in terms of his play style and how he treats his body, in order to ensure he can continue to play at a high level for many years to come.
Giggs added: “With the injuries he has had and at the stage of his career, this is when you need to start addressing it. When you get to your late 20s it hits home that you need to start making changes.
“Everyone is different and I tried to cover every base with yoga, acupuncture, ice baths, but what might work for some players might not for others.
“You also have to adapt your game. You can't play in your late 20s like you did when you were 19, but that experience means your brain is quicker and you can be more economical yet more effective.
“I was definitely more effective in games in my late 20s even if I wasn't as quick.”
Here’s hoping Bale is listening to Giggs, who retired at the age of 40.
Does Bale need to change his play style? Let us know in the comments section below!
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