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GARETH BALE

Gareth Bale meets hero Cristiano in Real training

Gareth Bale trained with Real Madrid on Wednesday for the first time since his move from Tottenham Hotspur to the Spanish capital.

Gareth Bale meets hero Cristiano in Real training
Photo: Pierre Philippe Marcou/AFP

Madrid published a photo on their website of Bale being greeted by Cristiano Ronaldo at the club's Valdebebas training ground after returning from international duty with Wales.

Bale, 24, joined Madrid for an undisclosed fee that many reports say was higher than the world-record €94 million (S$158.3 million) paid by the club to Manchester United for Ronaldo in 2009.

Bale played the final half-hour of Wales' 3-0 defeat to Serbia in Cardiff in a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday. It was his first taste of action this season, but he may well make his debut for his new club in Saturday's trip to Villarreal in La Liga.

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FOOTBALL

Gareth Bale out for up to four months following ankle surgery

Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale could be out for up to four month after undergoing surgery on an injured right ankle, according to press reports in Spain.

Gareth Bale out for up to four months following ankle surgery
Photo: AFP

It was initially hoped that Bale could be back in action within two to three months after suffering the injury to the peroneal tendons in his ankle during Real's 2-1 Champions League win at Sporting Lisbon last week.


Photo: AFP

However, after undergoing surgery in London on Tuesday, Madrid sports daily AS reported the Welshman is unlikely to return before April.   

As well as a huge blow to Madrid's hopes in La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League, Bale's absence could prove fatal to Wales' chances of qualifying for the World Cup for the first time since 1958.

After a glorious run to the semi-finals of Euro 2016, Chris Coleman's side trail Group D leaders Republic of Ireland by four points ahead of the sides meeting in Dublin on March 24th.

Bale is certain to miss Saturday's El Clasico against Barcelona, the Club World Cup later this month and the first leg of Real's last 16 Champions League tie.