Footy Times

Bale to Leave European Football for a New MLS Adventure

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Gareth Bale has joined Los Angeles FC on a one-year free transfer valid until June 2023. The five-time Champions League winner is about to become a free agent and is looking for a new club before representing Wales at the World Cup in Qatar, which begins in November.

Bale, 32, had been linked with a move to Cardiff after leaving Real Madrid after a nine-year stint but has decided to continue his career in the United States. The Wales captain confirmed his move to LAFC, which currently leads the Western Conference of Major League Soccer, via his official Twitter account. Bale captioned a video of himself in a club shirt and cap, “See you soon, Los Angeles. @LAFC.”

 

The Welsh Cyclone will partner with Italian national team’s defender Giorgio Chellini and Mexican forward Carlitos Vela in the United States. Bale and Chiellini would be eligible to make their debut against the LA Galaxy on July 8, perhaps giving El Trafico even more star power.

“I don’t really know if the standard makes too much of a difference,” Bale said at a recent international game for Wales. “A football game is a football game. I feel like I’ll never really lose my quality on the ball. I guess it’s a conversation to be had. I need time to think about what’s the best move for me, my family, my kids, and hopefully, we’ll sort that out over the summer. I have options.”

The 32-year-old, who joined Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur for a then-record amount of 100 million euros ($105.54 million) in 2013, will join as a free agent this summer, with his contract set to expire. In recent weeks, particularly after qualifying for the World Cup, there has been much conjecture regarding the footballer’s future at the Bernabéu when his contract ends.

In any case, according to BBC Wales, the destination with the most people was Cardiff City, the English Second club from his hometown, whose facilities he visited on Wednesday. Even Getafe president Ángel Torres Sánchez stated in public that his agent, Jonathan Barnett, had called him to propose him the deal. Bale rejected it a few days later when questioned about his future at a news conference: “I’m not heading to Getafe, that’s for sure.”

Los Angeles FC currently dominates the Western Conference of the US league with 30 points after 15 games, two points clear of second-placed Real Salt Lake.

Bale is one of Europe’s most accomplished players of his age, having made his reputation with Tottenham before joining Real Madrid in 2013. He won five Champions Leagues, four Club World Cups, three La Liga crowns, and three Spanish Cups during his stay in Spain.

Bale also just guided Wales to their first World Cup in half a century, with over 100 caps and 38 goals. Wales will meet the United States in Group B action in November at Qatar 2022.

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