Gareth Bale has won four Champions Leagues, a La Liga title and played a key role in finals since his move to Real Madrid. The Welshman’s overhead kick in last season’s Champions League final against Liverpool is seen by many as one of the best goals in the history of the final. He also scored an incredible individual goal in the Copa del Rey Final when he famously ran off the pitch to score. However, fast forward to now and Bale is whistled off after an ineffective performance against Barcelona. So, why is that Bale, who has played a key role in arguably Madrid’s most successful period in Europe, is not loved by their fans?
Why is Gareth Bale Not Feeling the Love From Real Madrid Fans?
Lack of Integration
This is most likely the key factor in Bale’s lack of rapport with the Real Madrid faithful. He has been in Spain for six years now and has not learnt to speak Spanish, and does not seem to have any desire to. Marcelo stated that he sits next to Bale in changing room but they rarely speak due to Bale’s lack of command of Spanish.
The Brazilian stated the ex-Tottenham Hotspur player tends to use hand gestures to interact. Thibaut Courtois also stated in a recent interview that Bale did not turn up to a team gathering. Bale’s lack of Spanish means that he is unable to communicate with the fans and makes him less relatable.
There has also been an accusation that Bale seems to be more interested in playing golf than improving his footballing skills, which has frustrated Madrid fans. This lack of integration into Real Madrid leads fans to question Bale’s commitment to the cause.
The Ronaldo Heir
It was widely perceived that when Gareth Bale joined Los Blancos, he was seen as the long-term successor to Cristiano Ronaldo. Many felt that when Ronaldo left, he would be able to be the main man and flourish in this role.
This has been proved to be false as Bale has arguably had his worst season in terms of goals without Ronaldo’s presence. The fact that their record signing has found himself on the bench for multiple occasions shows how far Bale’s stock has fallen.
Brazillian youngster Vinicius Junior has been seen by fans to be more of a ray of a hope than Bale. The former Southampton man’s poor displays in the recent El Clasicos and only scoring seven La Liga goals shows why many consider Vinicius to be the next big star. The increasing responsibility following Ronaldo’s departure has clearly just been too much for Bale.
Bale has been dubbed by Spanish newspapers ‘Mister Cristal’, or ‘Mr Glass’. Since joining Real Madrid, he has had more than 20 injuries and this has led to president Florentino Perez losing patience with him.
Ronaldo had an amazing injury record during his time at the Santiago Bernabeu and so it leads to comparisons. The the fans are unable to rely on the ex-Spurs forward for any period of time due to these injuries.
These reasons play a huge part in why Real Madrid fans would be happy to see Gareth Bale depart. It explains why they have not been able to build a rapport with such a decorated player, and why rumours that a return to England may not be too far from the truth.