Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale has found a new club home in the United States.
The 32-year-old winger has finalized a deal with Los Angeles FC, joining MLS after a trophy-filled run at the Bernabéu. LAFC made the deal official on Monday, with news of the signing coming over the weekend via Tom Bogert of MLSsoccer.com. The deal with the club will reportedly run for 12 months and expire next June, though there is reportedly an option for it to be extended an additional 18 months, through the 2024 MLS season.
Bale will officially become a free agent at the end of the month which is when his current contract with Real Madrid expires. He already confirmed he would be leaving the Spanish powerhouse after nearly a decade in a farewell letter posted on Twitter on June 1.
“I arrived here nine years ago as a young man who wanted to realize my dream of playing for Real Madrid. To wear the pristine white kit, to wear the crest on my chest, to play at the Santiago Bernabéu, to win titles and to be part of what it’s so famous for, to win the Champions League. I can now look back, reflect and say with honesty that this dream became a reality and much, much more,” he wrote in the letter.
“To be a part of this club’s history and to achieve what we achieved while I was a Real Madrid player, has been an incredible experience and one I will never forget.”
Bale would be eligible to play with LAFC as soon as July 8, against the rival LA Galaxy.
Bale is among the most accomplished players of his era, having won won five Champions Leagues, four Club World Cups, three La Liga titles and three Copas del Rey with Real Madrid. He tallied 106 goals and 67 assists in 258 appearances with the club from 2013 to ’22.
Bale, who turns 33 next month, also recently helped lead Wales to its first World Cup appearance in 64 years. He’ll face off against the U.S. men’s national team to start play in Group B this November in Qatar.
LAFC, which began MLS play in 2018, is in its fifth season. Through 16 games, the club is currently atop the Western Conference and Supporters’ Shield standings with 33 points.
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