Zinedine Zidane has backed Gareth Bale to succeed at Real Madrid after he was booed by sections of the Bernabeu crowd on Sunday night.
Bale has been the subject of transfer speculation this summer, and some supporters lashed out at the Welshman during Real’s 2-2 La Liga draw with Valencia.
‘He’s a key player in the squad,’ Zidane told reporters. ‘Gareth is Gareth. We keep working hard and we rely on Gareth, just as is the case with the other players.
‘Gareth’s situation is good. He had scoring opportunities but did not convert them. We’re going to keep working on this.
‘I can’t criticise my players, quite the contrary. I’m very happy with their work.’
Bale was once again overshadowed by youngster Marco Asensio, who scored twice as Real could only manage a 2-2 draw, dropping their first points of the campaign.
Asensio started on the left-hand side of a front three, with Bale on the right and Karim Benzema through the middle.
Cristiano Ronaldo will soon return from injury, and it is as yet unclear whether it is Bale, Benzema or Asensio who will make way for the World Player of the Year.
Asensio is the darling of Spain at the moment, and on his current form he is undroppable. That makes it a straight choice for Zidane between Bale and Benzema.
Neither Ronaldo or Asensio are true No. 9’s, making the logical choice to be dropped Bale.