Zidane: ‘I never had a problem with Bale’

Zinedine Zidane
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Updated 20 September 2020

Zidane: ‘I never had a problem with Bale’

  • I’m not going to pit us against each other. I’ve not had any problems with Gareth, I know what he has done for this club, Zinedine Zidane, Manager of Real Madrid

MADRID: Gareth Bale completed his return to Tottenham Hotspur on a season-long loan deal from Real Madrid, Spurs announced on Saturday.

However, the Wales attacker will not be fit to make his second debut for the club until late October due to an injury.

Zinedine Zidane earlier confirmed that Bale is in London to secure a return to Tottenham.

“I haven’t spoken to him,” Zidane told a press conference, ahead of Real Madrid’s first La Liga game against Real Sociedad on Sunday.

“What he’s done here cannot be disputed. He has won many things here and he has shown his qualities. Now let’s see what will happen.”

“There are negotiations,” Zidane continued.

“He’s there in London. I’m not going to pit us against each other. I’ve not had any problems with Gareth, I know what he has done for this club.

“I can’t say more. We’ve not had any problems and what he’s done here, no one can argue with. If he moves, I wish him the best.”

Zidane may have been keen to be cautious after he said last year it would be “best for everyone” if Bale left when a move to China seemed certain, only for the deal to collapse at the last minute.

Zidane added: “Gareth is our player at the moment and the issue is still to be closed.”

Bale has scored 105 goals and made 68 assists in 251 games for Real Madrid.

“Our club wishes good luck to a player who has been part of one of the most successful stages of our history,” Madrid said in a statement.

At Tottenham, Bale is still remembered as one of the club’s all-time greats.

The 31-year-old has won four Champions League titles and two in La Liga, as well as scoring arguably the greatest ever goal in a Champions League final against Liverpool in 2018.

“We know what the player has done in his seven years here,” said Zidane.

“Now it’s about what the player wants to do as well and I can’t get into that.

“Are there things that happen in a team? I’m not going to say the opposite of what I’ve always said. The player has been spectacular.”

Madrid begin the defense of their La Liga title this weekend against Real Sociedad, after being given extra time off following their involvement in last season’s Champions League.

The club have made no signings this summer due to the financial fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, while Eden Hazard is again struggling for fitness.

Asked if Hazard had now recovered from the ankle injury that plagued him last term, Zidane said: “I don’t know, I can’t tell you exactly.

“He is better and the most important thing is him, his feeling, that he is 100 percent. We have time, we are starting the season. What he needs is to be 100 or 120 percent.”

Zidane also confirmed fullback Sergio Reguilon, who spent a successful season on loan at Sevilla last year, is joining Tottenham.

“I congratulate Reguilon for the season he had,” said Zidane.

“We have two players in each position, nothing more. I have two fullbacks already and I can’t have three, or four, or five, because then it’s a mess.

“We wish him the best because he had a good season with Sevilla and he deserves to be there playing with Tottenham.”


Pakistan, Zimbabwe squads get all clear after COVID-19 tests 

Updated 27 October 2020

Pakistan, Zimbabwe squads get all clear after COVID-19 tests 

  • Tests were conducted Monday as part of the PCB’s COVID-19 protocols for the bilateral series 
  • The series begins with one-dayer on Friday 

RAWALPINDI: All 107 COVID-19 tests conducted on Zimbabwe and Pakistan players, support staff and match officials have returned negative ahead of the limited-overs series starting later this week, the Pakistan Cricket Board said Tuesday.
The tests were conducted Monday as part of the PCB’s COVID-19 protocols for the bilateral series.
All players, officials and staff have moved into a hub in a five-star hotel in Islamabad, the PCB said, and “are now allowed to interact with each other and move freely within the bio-secure bubble.”
Both teams will start training Tuesday at the Pindi Cricket Stadium, which will host the three ODIs and three Twenty20 internationals.
The series begins with one-dayer on Friday. Lahore was originally scheduled to host the Twenty20 series but those matches were shifted because of expected smog next month.