Wales manager Ryan Giggs will ban Gareth Bale from playing gold during next summer’s European Championships.
Since joining Real Madrid for £86m in 2013, the winger has been heavily criticised by the Spanish media for his regular trips to the golf course. Despite the issues he has faced following his move to Los Blancos, Bale has remained a reliable performer for his national side, helping them secure their place at Euro 2020.
After Wales beat Hungary 2-0 on 19th November – a result that confirmed the Dragons’ qualification for the European Championships – Bale was pictured holding a banner that read: “Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that order.”
However, Giggs has informed the 29-year-old not to continue his golfing exploits at the finals due to fears the swinging motion could aggravate an injury, according to the Times.
Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Crystal Palace’s Wayne Hennessey often join Bale on the green when the trio are on international duty, but they will also be banned from the sport during the summer.
Discussing Giggs’ decision, Welsh Football Association’s chief executive Jonathan Ford said: “
“You can’t be in a situation where you have players risking their fitness by playing golf. I appreciate that some players look at it differently. You can’t train all day so there has to be some entertainment for the guys.”
Ford has been researching potential training camps for Giggs and his squad, with Azerbaijan a potential location for the Welsh to set up base.
They have been drawn into a difficult group for the tournament, and will begin their campaign with a match against Switzerland, before they take on Turkey and Italy in the final two rounds of the pool stages.
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