Gareth Bale ready for Real Madrid return

Gareth Bale is set to make his first appearance since November after Zinedine Zidane announced the Wales international will be in the Real Madrid squad to face Espanyol this weekend.

Bale has been sidelined since undergoing surgery on the ankle tendon damage he suffered during a Champions League match against Sporting Lisbon almost three months ago.

Madrid coach Zidane said last week that he hoped to have Bale available again before the Champions League last-16 second leg against Napoli on March 7, but the 27-year-old forward has already returned to full training and is now set to be involved against Espanyol.

Zidane told a pre-match press conference, reported on the club's website: "He will be in the squad and the plan is for him to have some minutes. We're keen and he's keen as well.

"Bale is a very important player for us. We know the quality and speed that he has, and the damage he can cause the opposition.

"He's very happy to return to the team, to be with us, and be able to play again."


More in this Section

Daniel Levy is working so hard on Spurs project, says boss Mauricio Pochettino

Gundogan hopes there is no let up in fight against racism

Anthony Joshua lays down the gauntlet to Deontay Wilder

Celtic lose but scrape through to Europa League knockout stage


Lifestyle

Derval O'Rourke's tips on how to be healthy at Christmas

How to cook the traditional festive feast this Christmas

Vintage View: The world’s most iconic and influential mouse

Wish List: Classy place-setting to cute snowmen to get through the shortest days

More From The Irish Examiner