Real Madrid fans and Spanish press are pushing Gareth Bale out of Spain

The abuse Gareth Bale has received from Real Madrid fans and the Spanish press has steadily increased since his arrival in September 2013.

Over the past few months, the criticism has increased significantly with the player’s every move and decision on and off the pitch being scrutinized by the masses in Spain.

Without question, the criticism stems from the reported £85 million price tag which accompanied the Welshman when he arrived in the Spanish capital from Tottenham two summers ago. The expectation being Bale must outperform – or at least match – the levels of Real Madrid’s other huge transfer signing, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Bale performances have come nowhere matching his massive price tag. However the player can’t be blamed for the amount of money his transfer fee was agreed to.

While the Welshman did push for a move to Real Madrid, the deal was the brainchild of club president Florentino Perez who negotiated the transfer fee with Bale’s representatives and Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy.

Although Bale might not be worth £80 million to Real Madrid, there is little doubt the 2012-13 Premier League Player of the Year was worth that amount of money to Tottenham.

None of this will matter to Real Madrid supporters whose expectations of their team are the highest in the world. And it doesn’t make any difference to the Spanish press who dissect every aspect of a footballer’s life and publishes minute by minute reports to millions of readers.

Bale has been called “selfish” and had his relationship with Cristiano Ronaldo scrutinized by the media. Recently, fans and pundits have questioned the forward’s defensive work for Madrid, with many believing the former Southampton youth academy player – who began his career playing left-back – has abandoned his responsibilities in defense.

The overall assessment of Bale’s one-and-a-half seasons in Madrid is the player has regressed since leaving England.

The forward has been consistently jeered and whistled by home supporters this season and last night – following Real Madrid’s 2-1 defeat to Barcelona – many Spanish papers refused to give Bale a rating following his performance in El Clasico.

Early this morning, when the Wales international returned to Real Madrid’s training ground, he was greeted by a handful of angry supporters who hurled more verbal abuse at him while one fan was seen punching his car.

The ramping up of the negativity directed towards the Welsh forward is leading many to pose the question: “How much longer will Gareth Bale stay in Spain?”

The player himself has not been oblivious to the criticism he has been receiving.

Last week, during Madrid’s 2-0 victory over Levante, Bale reacted angrily after scoring his side’s first goal. The forward jogged past the home supporters while holding his ears before kicking the corner flag defiantly.

Of course, the fans reaction wasn’t good. However, Bale would go on to score the second goal of the match after the forward inadvertently deflected home a wayward shot by Cristiano Ronaldo.

Should the criticism of Bale’s performances continue from both the fans and the Spanish media, could the player decide “enough is enough” and ask to leave his dream club?

Would Real Madrid president Florentino Perez allow the player he acquired – after investing so much time and money – to leave after two seasons?

There are only a handful of clubs who could afford Bale’s fee – since it’s unlikely Perez would take a loss on the deal.

It will be interesting to see how and if this story unfolds from now until the end of the season.


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