Zidane hoping for a big season from Bale at Madrid
A fully fit Gareth Bale will be a valuable weapon to Real Madrid in the coming season, says Zinedine Zidane.
Zinedine Zidane is confident Gareth Bale will have a big part to play in Real Madrid's search of continued success if he can stay fit this season.
While Madrid won LaLiga and the Champions League last term, Bale missed long stretches through injury and was only brought off the bench in European final victory over Juventus.
It had been reported that Madrid could offload Bale and move for Monaco's Kylian Mbappe, with Manchester United among the Welshman's suitors.
But Zidane is counting on Bale for the coming season and wants to see the former Tottenham forward hit the ground running.
"[Bale is] good, training well and that's the most important thing," he told a pre-match news conference ahead of facing Deportivo la Coruna.
"He had few chances last year with four months of injury, now he's well, he's enjoyed very good preparation and I hope it's an important year for him and for us."
While Bale is available, talisman Cristiano Ronaldo is not after a push on an official in the Supercopa de Espana resulted in a five-match ban that Zidane is still coming to terms with.
"I never complain and I'm not going to start now," the coach said. "I just said that the punishment was a little too much and that was all.
"Five games is a lot of time to be without Cristiano. We appealed and we will appeal again. We'll do everything we can."