Gareth Bale’s career could have been even BETTER, insists his former Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui… with the Spaniard claiming the Welshman did not fulfil his potential as he retires at 33
- Gareth Bale could have enjoyed an even better career, claims Julen Lopetegui
- The Welsh winger announced his retirement at the age of 33 on Monday evening
- Wolves boss Lopetegui managed the gifted Bale during his time at Real Madrid
- But the 56-year-old believes Bale didn’t make the most of his fantastic talents
Gareth Bale would have enjoyed an even better career if he had handled the demands of top-level football differently, according to his former Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui.
The Wales star announced his retirement from football on Monday after a career in which he collected 21 major trophies, including five Champions League titles.
Current Wolves manager Lopetegui worked with Bale during his three-month stint in charge of Madrid in 2018 and he hinted the 33-year-old had not fulfilled his potential.
Gareth Bale could’ve had an even better career, says Julen Lopetegui, after his retirement
The Spanish boss, now at Wolves, managed Welsh winger Bale during his time at Real Madrid
‘In terms of his strengths, he’s one of the best players I’ve seen,’ said Lopetegui. ‘Maybe he doesn’t take advantage of these strengths in his career for different reasons.
‘It was a pity in my opinion because I have seen a lot of players and I guarantee you that Gareth has incredible strengths, physically and technically.
‘Maybe with the demands at the highest level, it is not easy for anyone. Maybe sometimes your character, your personality, the demands you make on yourself can make the difference.
‘But of course he has been a fantastic player. I enjoyed working with him for many months and I wish him the best for his life.’
Bale won five Champions League titles and three LaLiga crowns during a decorated career
Meanwhile, Bale is set to be offered a roving role by the Welsh FA following his retirement from football on Monday.
One of Britain’s greatest players called time on a career that brought 21 major trophies, including five Champions Leagues, as well as three major tournaments with his country.
Wales chiefs are keen to keep Bale involved and are poised to hold talks with the 33-year-old’s camp in the coming days.
Sportsmail understands an ambassador’s role one of the options to be discussed. That would allow him to spend time with the squad as well as in official circles.