Gareth Bale has long been a thorn in the side of Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid.
You can sense it in the Frenchman’s tone when he has to field question after question about the Welshman, whenever he’s left out of the starting XI.
Perhaps what’s behind Zidane’s ire is that it’s entirely possible Bale will just sit as a substitute for the remainder of his contract with Los Blancos, and effectively just ‘take the money.’
Toni Kroos has lifted the lid on the situation suggesting on Sky Sports Germany and cited by Sport, that the dressing room are being dragged into the mire, and it’s becoming a unwanted distraction.
The club did have the opportunity to sell Bale a year ago to a Chinese Super League outfit, however, president, Florentino Perez, pulled out of the deal at the 11th hour.
Now, both parties are happy to just dig their heels in. Bale will happily sit on the bench, Zidane appears equally happy to either not play him at all, or just give him a few cursory minutes here or there.
“The situation is unsatisfactory for everyone,” Kroos said on Sky Sports Germany, cited by Sport.
“They didn’t sign him to play so little, that he had so little presence. He wanted to leave last summer. The club first said yes, but later they changed the decision. I don’t know if he’s still angry about it.”
Whether he is or not, Bale has never been anything but a model professional whilst earning his keep at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Now that there does appear to be nowhere further for either party to go with this, it will surely be in everyone’s best interests if Bale was, ideally, played or if not, sold.