The soap opera that is Gareth Bale’s love of golf has taken another turn with the Real Madrid star revealing that he is bemused by all the criticism he receives for his love of the sport.
Despite being a four-time Champions League winner with Los Blancos, the Spanish media often seem keener to discuss the Welshman’s golfing career than his performances on the pitch.
Case in point, Wednesday’s edition of Diario AS – which carried a picture of Bale leaning on his putter on its front page.
AS’ cover was a response to comments made by the 30-year-old on the The Eric Anders Lang Show in which he questioned the media’s objections to his obsessive pasttime.
“A lot of people have problems with me playing golf,” Bale said (via BBC Sport).
“I don’t know what their reason is because I’ve spoken to doctors and everybody’s fine with it. The media has this perception that it’s not good for me, you should be resting, it can cause you injuries.
“(Basketball player) Steph Curry plays maybe on the morning of a game, but if I play two days before a game it’s like, ‘What is he doing?'”
Criticism of Bale ramped up back in November when he celebrated Wales’ qualification for Euro 2020 by parading around with a flag that featured the now immortal slogan: ‘Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that Order.’
Real fans booed him on his return to the club, fuelling speculation over his long term future with Manchester United and Tottenham touted as potential suitors.
No such move ever materialised with Bale enduring an unremarkable campaign overall. Ravaged by injury, the former Spurs man has made just 14 La Liga appearances, scoring two goals. He will be hoping to showcase better form with Spanish football poised to return next month.