5 reasons this could be Gareth Bale's last season at Real Madrid
Recent goals have eased some of the pressure on Gareth Bale at Real Madrid, but his future at the club remains as vulnerable as ever. Criticism from the media remains as stinging as ever, while fans of Los Blancos continue to remain unconvinced.
Here are the reasons why the Welshman could be in his final season at the Bernabeu...
#5 He still hasn’t truly settled
Bale has just passed the four-year mark at Real Madrid, and in truth, it feels like little has changed for the Welshman. Bale announced himself in Spanish football on his debut against Villarreal, coming on as a substitute to lash home a strike that promised to be the beginning of something very special.
It hasn’t quite transpired like that, however, and while Bale can point to a haul of three UEFA Champions League winners medals, a LaLiga triumph and a Copa del Rey victory that he was instrumental in, it is enough for many, but seemingly not, given his club is Real Madrid.
There is still the feeling of 'Bale the outsider' in Madrid, a player that has yet to grasp the language and who mixes with select groups of teammates to the point of something resembling friendship.
While there have been noises of him being more at one with the culture than previously, there is little strong evidence to suggest that is the case. Bale appears to be continuously on the outside looking in as the Spanish clique of players grows closer than ever.
A recent promotional event on Madrid’s famous Gran Via saw Bale targeted by fans, jeering that he doesn't speak Spanish. This inability to form a link with the fans has clearly left Bale uneasy, and it’s understandable why Madrid can’t truly be labelled ‘home’.