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24 April 2024

Factbox.. Gareth Bale announces retirement

By Reuters

Factbox on Wales and Los Angeles FC player Gareth Bale, who announced his retirement on Monday.

orn: July 16, 1989 in Cardiff, Wales


* Bale makes his professional debut for Southampton aged 16 years and 275 days against Millwall in the second tier in 2006.
* Makes 45 appearances for Saints and scores five goals
* In 2007, joins Tottenham Hotspur for an initial fee of five million pounds ($6.10 million).


* Used predominantly as a left back in his early career at Spurs but was considered defensively suspect.
* Did not win any of his first 24 league matches with the club and only broke his duck as an 85th minute substitute with Spurs leading 5-0 against Burnley in September 2009.
* Manager Harry Redknapp deploys him in an advanced position to take advantage of his electrifying pace and forward runs.
* Scores a memorable hat-trick in a 4-3 Champions League loss against Inter Milan at the San Siro.
* Wins PFA Player of the Year award and named in UEFA Team of the Year - the first Welsh player and first Spurs player to be named in the lineup.
* Manager Andre Villas-Boas converts Bale into a forward and he scores a career-high 26 goals in a season in 2012-13.
* Named Player of the Year for a second time and also scoops up Young Player of the Year award.
* Real Madrid sign Bale for a then-world record fee of 100 million euros.

  • REAL MADRID (2013-2020)

* Scores on Real debut against Villarreal in a 2-2 draw and grabs first hat-trick in 4-0 win over Real Valladolid, becoming only the second British player to do so in LaLiga after Gary Lineker.
* Scores late winner in Copa del Rey final against Barcelona with a stunning solo run from his own half.
* Scores in the 2014 Champions League final in extra time to help Real win a much-awaited 10th Champions League crown and ends the season with 22 goals in all competitions.
* Gets an assist in the 2016 Champions League final and also scores in the ensuing penalty shootout win over Atletico Madrid.
* Extends contract until 2022 but ankle injury results in a four-month spell out in 2016-17. Plays 19 times in LaLiga title-winning campaign and wins third Champions League crown.
* Has his best scoring return in 2017-18 since his debut season, with 21 goals including an overhead kick and a long-range effort in the Champions League final against Liverpool as Real win their 13th crown and Bale’s fourth.

  • * Scores his 100th goal for Real in the 2018-19 season but fans grow frustrated as Bale is unable to step into Cristiano Ronaldo’s shoes after the Portugal forward joins Juventus.

* Has his worst season in a Real shirt, scoring only three goals in 2019-20, missing the final stretch of games in the title run-in as Real pip Barcelona to the trophy.


* Returns to his former club Spurs on Sept. 2020. on a season-long loan.
* Scores his 200th career goal in a 3-3 draw against LASK in the Europa League.
* Finishes the season with 34 appearances in all competitions, scoring 16 goals with three assists.

  • REAL MADRID (2021-22)

* Appears in only seven games for Real during the 2021-22 season, scoring one goal in LaLiga.
* In June confirms he is leaving the club.

  • LOS ANGELES FC (2022)

* Signs for Major League Soccer club Los Angeles FC as a free agent on a 12-month contract.
* Appears in 12 regular season games for LA, scoring twice.
* Makes his first MLS playoff appearance in the championship match against Philadelphia Union, scoring in the 128th minute, the latest in league history, to tie the game 3-3 and force a penalty shootout, which LA win to lift their first MLS Cup.

  • WALES (2006-2022)

* Becomes Wales' then-youngest debutant in May 2006.
* In October becomes the youngest player to score for Wales with a free kick against Slovakia in the Euro 2008 qualifiers.
* Scores seven times in Euro 2016 qualifiers to help Wales reach their first major finals since the 1958 World Cup. They go out in the semi-finals to eventual champions Portugal.
* In March 2018 scores his first international hat-trick against China and becomes Wales' all-time top scorer.
* Helps Wales reach last 16 at the delayed Euro 2020 tournament were they are beaten 4-0 by Denmark.
* In June his free kick in the playoff final against Ukraine qualifies Wales to the World Cup for the first time in 64 years.
* The same month he is made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for his services to football and charity.
* In the 2022 World Cup Bale scores the first goal for Wales in the tournament since 1958 with a penalty against the United States in a 1-1 draw in their opening game.
* In Wales' second group game against Iran he becomes his country's most capped player of all time with 111 appearances.
* Wales fail to reach the knockout stage in Qatar.
* With 41 goals he is Wales' all-time leading scorer ahead of Ian Rush (28).
($1 = 0.8199 pounds) (Complied by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru and Janina Nuno Rios in Mexico City)