Real Madrid pay tribute to Gareth Bale after retirement from football


Wales' forward #11 Gareth Bale applauds at the crowd after being defeated 3-0 in the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group B football match between Wales and England at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al-Rayyan, west of Doha on November 29, 2022.

Real Madrid have paid tribute to Gareth Bale after he announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 33.

The Welshman is widely regarded as one of Britain’s greatest ever footballers, and his career will be fondly remembered for some incredible moments with Southampton, Tottenham, Real Madrid, LAFC and his country.

Always a player for the big occasion, Bale scored in two Champions League finals for Real Madrid, including a spectacular match-winning overhead kick against Liverpool in 2018, and won the competition on five separate occasions.

He also led the charge as Wales sensationally reached for the semi-finals of Euro 2016, before qualifying for the World Cup after a 64-year absence.

Bale’s relationship with Real Madrid’s fans and the local media was fractious at times, but there’s no disputing how valued his contributions on the field were. Indeed, he was regarded as one of the best players in the world after his £85.3m transfer, and made up one third of the famed Bale, Benzema and Ronaldo trio.

Following confirmation of his retirement, Real Madrid have released a statement hailing Bale’s legendary status, in addition to wishing him well for the future.

“Given Gareth Bale’s announcement of his retirement from football as a professional player, Real Madrid CF wants to show its gratitude, admiration and affection for a great legend of our club and world football,” the statement read.

“Gareth Bale arrived at Real Madrid in 2013 and defended our shirt for 9 years, during which he won 19 titles: 5 European Cups, 4 Club World Cups, 3 European Super Cups, 3 Leagues, 1 Copa del Rey and 3 Spanish Super Cups . Individually, he was named Best Player in the 2018 Champions League Final and won the Ballon d’Or at the Club World Cup that same year.

“Gareth Bale has been part of our team in one of the most successful stages in our history and forever represents many of the brightest moments of the last decade, such as his goal after a memorable run in the final of the Copa del Rey in Valencia. 

In 2014, his transcendental goal in the final of the Champions League in Lisbon in 2014 or his goals in the final of the Champions League in Kyiv in 2018, especially the Chilean one that will remain forever etched in the memory of all football lovers.

“His figure will forever be linked to the history and legend of our club.

“Best of luck, Gareth, and best wishes to you and your family.”

Bale’s final act at club level was to help LAFC win the 2022 MLS Cup – typically, he scored a dramatic injury-time equaliser before his side emerged victorious in a dramatic penalty shootout.

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