Sunday, October 24 2021

Gareth Bale is “ticking all the boxes” since returning to Real Madrid which is a boost for Wales ahead of their forthcoming 2022 World Cup qualifiers said Welsh manager Robert Page.

Bale is back in favour at Real under new coach Carlo Ancelotti — having been sent on loan to Tottenham Hotspur by his predecessor Zinedine Zidane — and scored in their 3-3 draw with Levante last Sunday.

It was his first La Liga goal for the club since September 2019.

His form augurs well for Wales’s friendly with Finland followed by qualifiers against Belarus and Estonia next month.

Wales resume their World Cup qualifying campaign having opened with a 3-1 away defeat to group favourites Belgium and a 1-0 home victory over Czech Republic in March.

“You’ve got to give it your best and play for your club,” said Page.

“There’s no argument there, he’s (Bale) ticking all the boxes.

“He’s got a manager now who’s been impressed in what he’s done in pre-season and watched him through the Euros.

“That’s all he can influence. Give his best in training and show what he’s all about and he’s going to start playing games.

“Thankfully he’s had a positive impact on the manager and started the season in good form. He’s scoring goals, which is great for us,” added Page who has taken temporary charge of the team while full-time boss Ryan Giggs prepares to go on trial in January next year, accused of assault and coercive behaviour towards his ex-girlfriend.

Page is delighted too to have Bale and his other star player Aaron Ramsey both fit and in form.

They have not played together in a qualifier since Wales beat Hungary to qualify for the Euros in November 2019, largely due to the Juventus midfielder’s injury problems.

“They were tremendous working together (against Hungary) and showed it in the Euros again,” Page said of the duo who helped the Welsh reach the last 16.

“They are in good form coming into this camp, which is really pleasing for me and the Welsh supporters.

“We want our players playing competitive football week in and week out, it’s no different for them two.

“I’m not surprised after the tournament they’ve had that they’ve gone back and started the season well at their clubs.”

pi/bsp

Source: Yahoo Sports

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