Zidane explains Bale’s absence from Real Madrid squad to face Man City

Zidane explains Bale’s absence from Real Madrid squad to face Man City

Bale will not feature against City (Picture: Getty Images)

Zinedine Zidane has revealed that Gareth Bale is not part of Real Madrid’s 24-man squad to face Manchester City because he ‘didn’t want to play’.

Los Blancos face Pep Guardiola’s side in the second leg of their crunch Champions League last-16 tie after losing the home leg 2-1.

Bale has featured just twice for Madrid since the restart amid speculation that the Welshman is set to leave the Bernabeu.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of Friday night’s game, Zidane admitted it was the winger’s choice not to travel to Manchester.

‘It was a personal conversation I had with him,’ said Zidane. ‘He preferred not to play.

‘The rest remains between me and him but he said he didn’t want to play.’

Bale didn’t look too happy during the title celebrations (Picture: Getty Images)

When pressed on if Bale will remain a Madrid player, the French boss said: ‘I don’t know. Now he is a current player at Real Madrid. That has not changed. He is our player.

‘I respect that and I respect him, like everyone else.

‘He preferred not to play. That is the only thing I can tell you. The rest of us are all here, preparing for the game. The only thing we are concentrating on is the game.’

The BBC claim that Bale opted not to be included in the squad as he knew he wasn’t going to get on the pitch.

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