‘Mini setback’ concern as Gareth Bale again missing from LAFC squad
After missing out on LAFC’s game against Charlotte FC on Saturday evening, Gareth Bale was once again notably absent for his side’s match against DC United last night.
The Wayne Rooney managed DC United came to town to face the MLS Western Conference high fliers, but was no doubt relieved to see his opponents without Bale and also Giorgio Chiellini, the veteran defender signed from Juventus who also missed out again.
Rooney saw his side narrowly lose 1-0 in a game where Bale’s ingenuity in unlocking an opposition defence would have been more than welcome.
The Welshman trained apart from the rest of the squad on Monday and when LAFC head coach Steve Cherundolo was quizzed about Bale’s situation in a press conference ahead of the game, he revealed the Welshman had been suffering ‘aches and pains’ as he gets himself to full fitness.
“He hasn’t been a hundred per cent,” said the head coach. “We’re just kind of moving him along. I think it’s pretty normal aches and pains in the middle of a pre-season for a player. That’s where we are with him, the same for Giorgio. Trying to get your body into the kind of position where you’re able to play 90 minutes week in week out, in the middle of a season is difficult. Sometimes there are little mini setbacks and that’s where we are with both of them. It is purely precautionary.”
Cherundolo also added that the selection of both players would be evaluated right up until kick off.
Both were listed as ‘questionable’ on the club’s website. ‘Load management’ again being listed as the reason for their appearance being in doubt, the same reason for their absence from the game against Charlotte FC.
Load management determines how often a player should work out, practice, travel, and how many game minutes they should be given.
He is questionable according to the club. Bale arrived without a preseason. So he hasused games to get fit. It’s just a precaution to make sure he’s at his best for MLS playoffs and the World Cup. pic.twitter.com/YQF5qIlQTq
— Vince La Rosa (@VinceTheRose) August 16, 2022
Since joining LAFC, Bale has played a total of 96 minutes in four games as a substitute, scoring two goals.
There are nine games left of the regular season. However, given their dominant position in MLS, it’s almost certain that LAFC will be one of the favourites going into the end of season playoffs.
Hopefully, Gareth Bale will be fit and firing heading into the post season games – for the sake of both his club and Wales’ chances at the World Cup in November.
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Real Madrid fans might say ‘Bale up to his usual tricks again’.