Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed Gareth Bale is fit to start against Barcelona tomorrow - and could pair the Welshman with Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel di Maria in attack.
Bale has had an injury-plagued start to life in Spain since moving from Tottenham for a world record £86 million transfer fee, but having come on as a substitute against Juventus in mid-week is now fully fit to feature in his first El Clasico.
"It is true that he didn't have an easy time until now but he has worked hard,” Ancelotti said.
“He used the period of the international break to improve his condition and, in my opinion and in his opinion, he is ready to play from the beginning. When he plays, he will be ready."
According to the Guardian, Ancelotti is considering a shake-up in his attacking line-up for the derby at the Nou Camp, although the Italian insists he is yet to pick his team.
It could be that Bale is played in an attacking trio alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel di Maria, with Karim Benzema that most likely to miss out.
Ancelotti bought on Bale in the 2-1 victory over Juventus at the Bernabeu on Wednesday for Benzema, who has struggled to find the back of the net recently.
In that game it was Ronaldo that occupied the forward role, with Bale and the in-form Di Maria out wide.
The former Spurs forward will likely start on the right, just as he did when he emerged for his 25 minute cameo in mid-week, despite the fact he regularly played on the left for Tottenham.
"He likes to play there and that is where he will play," Ancelotti said after the game against Juventus.
Bale, who scored on his debut against Villarreal, but has since struggled with thigh and back injuries, says he is excited to have the change to play in one of the hotly-contested games on the planet.
"I am sure it will be an amazing experience," Bale told Real Madrid television's international service.
"I've had a few minutes this week and I've had a good week's training as well, so I think I'm fit enough. It is up to the manager now whether I play from the start or am on the bench. I am enjoying everything about Real Madrid at the moment. Obviously, it was a bit disappointing to get the injury but that is behind me now and I just want to kick on."
Cristiano Ronaldo meanwhile has urged fans and the media not to expect too much of the ex-Tottenham ace despite his hefty transfer fee.
"You have to be patient with him," the Portuguese superstar said this week. "With time you will see that he's a very good player."
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