Bale set to miss Wales’ clash with Republic
GARETH Bale is reportedly set to return to Real Madrid ahead of Wales’ Nations League clash with the Republic of Ireland on Tuesday night, writes IAN MITCHELMORE.
The Welshman missed the 4-1 defeat to Spain at Principality Stadium on Thursday night with what was termed as muscle fatigue and was a major doubt for the clash with Martin O’Neill’s side in Dublin.
Speaking after the loss to Spain, Ryan Giggs admitted he wanted to make a decision on Bale’s availability as early as possible.
“We’ll make a decision in the next couple of days because then we have to prepare for the game,” said Giggs.
“If Gareth is not available we have to prepare to see what team we’re going to play, so we’ll make it sooner rather than on the day.”
Asked if it looks likely Wales will be without Bale, Giggs replied: “Yeah, it does.”
The squad were set for a crunch training session at their Vale Resort base this morning, giving Bale one final opportunity to prove his fitness for the game at the Aviva Stadium.
But reports in the Spanish media claim Bale will return to Madrid tomorrow, which would mean he will play no part against O’Neill’s men at the Aviva Stadium.
Bale was substituted 10 minutes from time during Real Madrid’s 1-0 La Liga defeat to Alaves before the international break, while he also suffered a minor injury in his side’s 0-0 draw with derby rivals Atletico Madrid at the end of September.
Speaking about his relationship with the Spanish giants, Giggs said: “The medical team are constantly in dialogue with Real Madrid, like we are with every team.”
Julen Lopetegui’s side host Levante at the Bernabeu on Saturday before facing Plzen in the Champions League in midweek.
They then face Barcelona at the Nou Camp in the first El Clasico of the season.
Elsewhere, Chris Mepham and Ethan Ampadu have both returned to their clubs due to injury.
Chelsea’s Ampadu started in the centre of the park against Spain, but was forced off early in the second half after suffering a knee problem. And Brentford centre-back Mepham did not feature at all in the defeat after picking up a knock in training.
Giggs has added Ipswich Town winger Gwion Edwards and Sheffield United’s Kieron Freeman to his squad.