Bale ‘playing Russian roulette’ at Real

Gareth Bale

Bale joined Real Madrid from Tottenham in 2013

Gareth Bale is “playing Russian roulette” with his career because of the injury risk at Real Madrid, says former Wales coach Raymond Verheijen.

Forward Bale, 26, returned to action on Saturday after two months out with a recurrence of a calf injury.

“Does he want to risk injuries every season or look for a club with very professional approach and a very healthy injury record,” said Verheijen.

“There are not many, but they are there.”

After scoring as a substitute in Real’s 7-1 La Liga win over Celta Vigo on Saturday, Bale made his first start since 17 January in Tuesday’s Champions League win against Roma.

Dutchman Verheijen was an assistant to the late Wales boss Gary Speed, who died in November, 2011 aged 42.

Verheijen told BBC Wales Sport: “Staying at that club is basically playing Russian roulette with your career.”

Real Madrid have been asked to comment on Verheijen’s thoughts but are yet to respond.

Former Tottenham player Bale missed Wales’ friendly defeat by the Netherlands in November and his latest injury raised concerns for his country with Euro 2016 in the summer.

Bale played a starring role in Wales’ qualifying campaign, playing in all 10 of their matches and scoring seven of their 11 goals as they reached their first major tournament finals since the 1958 World Cup.

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