Wales captain Gareth Bale retires, as he has announced his retirement from football at the age of 33 after a glittering career.
Wales iconic star Gareth Bale retires from football.
Gareth Bale, the five-time Champions League champion with Real Madrid and Wales’ all-time greatest footballer, has announced his retirement from the game.
Bale, one of the most decorated players in British history, left Los Angeles FC midway through his contract, which was set to end this summer.
In a little more than a month after Wales’ devastating group-stage loss at their first World Cup in 64 years, Bale made the decision to keep playing. In his first World Cup finals participation, Bale led Wales as captain.
Cardiff-born Bale’s club career took him from Southampton to Tottenham Hotspur and a world record transfer to Spanish giants Real before his move to Major League Soccer club Los Angeles FC in June 2022.
He was his country’s talisman as they reached the 2016 and 2020 European Championships before he led Wales at their first World Cup since 1958 at Qatar 2022, ending his international career with 41 goals in 111 appearances.
Bale was twice named footballer of the year while at Tottenham, in 2010-11 and 2012-13, and moved to Real for what was then a world-record fee of more than £80m in September 2013.
During his time in the Spanish capital, Bale helped Real win three league titles and five Champions League titles – a number no other British player has matched – along with three Club World Cups, three Uefa Super Cups and a Spanish cup.
“It [football] has truly given me some of the best moments of my life,” added Bale.
“The highest of highs over 17 seasons, that will be impossible to replicate, no matter what the next chapter has in store for me.”