Gareth Bale was man of the match against Burnley
Gareth Bale in action for Spurs

Gareth Bale: Real Madrid return, Tottenham exit planned for summer


Gareth Bale plans to end his Tottenham stay at the end of the season and return to Real Madrid.

Wales captain Bale joined Spurs on loan in September and has had a mixed season with form and fitness issues dominating his second spell in north London.

The 31-year-old’s Madrid contract runs until the end of the 2021-22 season.

“There’s no distraction for me,” Bale told a press conference ahead of Wales’ opening 2022 World Cup qualifier in Belgium.

“I think the main reason I came to Spurs this year was to play football first and foremost. Going into the Euros I wanted to be match-fit. The original plan was to do a season at Spurs and after the Euros still have a year left at Real Madrid.

“My plan is to go back, that’s as far I have planned.”

Gareth Bale has enjoyed quite the turnaround in February
Gareth Bale's season seemed to turn around in February

Spurs manager Jose Mourinho said earlier this month that Bale’s future beyond the end of the season was a matter for Real.

Mourinho appeared to question Bale’s attitude after Tottenham’s FA Cup defeat to Everton in February, the Portuguese admitting he was surprised the player asked for a scan on an injury he described as “not obvious”.

But Bale then enjoyed a first-team resurgence, scoring six goals in six games before Spurs’ season took a turn for the worse with a derby defeat to Arsenal and a Europa League exit at the hands of Dinamo Zagreb.

Bale was benched for the 3-0 defeat in Croatia and the 2-0 Premier League win at Aston Villa on Sunday.

On arriving fresh for international duty, Bale said: “Over the last few years this is probably the most match fitness I’ve had.

“I’m feeling fresh and ready to go. I always think when things aren’t going too well at a club, it’s nice to get away, especially mentally, get away from the club environment.

“Definitely it can be a benefit. We focus on these games for Wales, which are very important for us. We forget club life and concentrate on this.”

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