Gareth Bale Retires From Football At Age 33 With Immediate Effect.

Gareth Bale has announced his retirement from professional football on Monday, aged  33.

The Welshman who is one of Britain’s most decorated players, has stepped away from the game midway through his contract at Los Angeles FC, which was due to expire this summer.

This comes as a surprise because, the Wales captain, is much younger than the average retiring age but his career began to drift when he struggled to make the expected impact at Real Madrid after leaving Tottenham Hotspur.

After his country's group stage exit from the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which was their first World Cup finals tournament in 64 years (1958), Bale had promised to continue playing football for as long as he his wanted,  but the Cardiff-born attacker has now shockingly decided to hang up his boots.

Bale started his career at Southampton, making his debut as a teenager (age 16), played 48 matches and scored five goals for the Saints.

He then joined Tottenham in a deal worth a reported £10m in 2007, and spent six year at the club. He was used primarily as a left-back in his early career days, but he really began to thrive in a Spurs shirt when operating further forward, a role which saw him score a scintillating hat-trick in the UEFA Champions League at the San Siro against Inter Milan.

Bale then joined Real Madrid in September 2013 for a then world-record £85m fee. His best moments moment came on the biggest stage in club football, with his stunning overhead-kick goal against Liverpool in the UCL final in Kyiv 2018.

He scored 81 goals in 176 games for the Spanish giants, and won the LaLiga three times, the Champions League an incredible five times, a number no other British player has matched, along with three Club World Cups, three Uefa Super Cups and a Spanish cup.

His latter part of his nine-year spell for Madrid was disrupted by controversy and injury, as he received stinging criticism in Spain for celebrating Wales’s qualification for Euro 2020 with a Welsh flag  with the words that read: “Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that Order.

He returned to Tottenham on loan in 2021-22, and scored 17 goals to give him an overall Spurs record of 72 goals in 237 games at a club where he is still adored, before making just seven club appearances for Madrid in the following campaign, his last as a Real player.

In a statement posted on Twitter about retiring from both club and international football, Bale said: "From my very first touch at Southampton to my last with LAFC and everything in between, shaped a club career that I have an immense pride and gratitude for.

"Playing for and captaining my country 111 times has truly been a dream come true. To show my gratitude to all of those that have played their part along this journey, feels like an impossibility.

"I feel indebted to many people for helping to change my life and shape my career in a way I couldn't have ever dreamed of when I first started out at 9 years old."


Bale scored 41 goals in a record 111 international appearances. He has been the talisman of the Wales team in recent years and helped them reach the quarter-finals of EURO 2016 and guided them to only their second-ever World Cup appearance in Qatar. 

His final game was the 3-0 defeat by England on November 29 in Qatar, in which he was substituted at half-time. His final goal for his country was in November, a penalty against the USA in Qatar, and his final goal at domestic level was a 128th-minute headed equaliser in extra time to set up a penalty shootout which his side won, helping LAFC  lift their Major League Soccer Cup victory first time.

He had spent last season on loan with Los Angeles in the MLS, managed 13 appearances, including only two starts.

The nation's most-capped male player and record men's goalscorer described his decision to quit on social media, as "by far the hardest of my career".

My decision to retire from international football has been by far the hardest of my career,” Bale said. “My journey on the international stage is one that has changed not only my life but who I am.”

"How do I articulate the impact it has had on my life? How do I put in to words the way I felt, every single time I put on that Welsh shirt? My answer is that I couldn't possibly do any of those things justice, simply with words. 

"But I know that every person involved in Welsh football, feels the magic, and is impacted in such a powerful and unique way, so I know you feel what I feel, without using any words at all.

"The fortune of being Welsh and being selected to play for and captain Wales, has given me something incomparable to anything else I've experienced. I am honoured and humbled to have been able to play a part in the history of this incredible country, to have felt the support and passion of the red wall, and together have been to unexpected and amazing places.

"I shared a dressing room with boys that became brothers, and back room staff that became family, I played for the most incredible managers, and felt the undying support and love from the most dedicated fans in the world. Thank you to every one of you for being on this journey with me.

"So for now I am stepping back, but not away from the team that lives in me and runs through my veins. After all, the dragon on my shirt is all I need.

"Together stronger, Diolch."

In a separate statement on social media Bale said: “After careful and thoughtful consideration I announce my immediate retirement from club and international football.

“I feel incredibly fortunate to have achieved my dream of playing the sport I love. It has truly given me some of the best moments of my life. The highest of highs over 17 seasons that will be impossible to replicate, no matter what the next chapter has in store for me.”

LAFC paid tribute to their star forward.

We want to thank Gareth for everything he brought to our club,” LAFC co-president and general manager John Thorrington said. “He arrived here with a goal to win championships in LA and, like he has done everywhere else in his career, he succeeded.

“It was an honour to have one of the most talented, dynamic and exciting players of his generation finish his career with a title for LAFC.”

Tottenham tweeted: “Congratulations on an incredible career.”

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