Real Madrid hero Gareth Bale fuels Premier League speculation
Gareth Bale said he wants to be playing every week -- which "has not happened this season" -- after leading Real Madrid to the Champions League trophy in Saturday's 3-1 win over Liverpool.
Bale began the game on the bench, but after coming on put Madrid ahead for good with what he agreed was the best goal of his career, a stunning bicycle kick, before adding a second following Loris Karius' goalkeeping error.
Bale started only 20 of Madrid's 38 games in La Liga this season and only three times in the Champions League, and he did not shy away from revealing his frustration about his playing time after the game.
"I need to be playing week in, week out, and that has not happened this season," he told BT Sport. "I had an injury five, six weeks in but fit ever since. I have to sit down with my agent in the summer and discuss it."
Bale repeated his claim his his postgame news conference and said he would consider leaving the club this summer if he was not fully in Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane's plans.
"I feel that I need to be playing every week," he said. "It's something that I've always wanted to do, something that I feel like I should be doing. If it's not the case here, then it's something I have to really consider and sit down and do.
"I'll do that in the summer. I have plenty of time now to relax, to reflect on things and see where things go."
Zidane wouldn't commit when asked if Bale would get assurances over a place in the starting XI next season, saying: "It might be complicated. But everybody looks out for themselves and takes care of their own thing, and I understand that."
The Welshman had scored five goals in as many games coming into the final, but Zidane still left him on the bench to start, and Bale said he was happy to make an impact anyway.
"Obviously I was very disappointed not to start the game, I felt I deserved it but the manager makes the decisions," Bale told BT. The best I have been doing is to come on and make an impact, I certainly did.
"It has to be the best goal in a Champions League final, there is no bigger stage. I am just happy to get the win. It is a team game but when you are a substitute, it is a game of more than 11 players. I made an impact."
The Champions League triumph saved an otherwise disappointing season for Madrid, as they finished third in La Liga and watched rivals Barcelona win a domestic league and cup double.
"We know what we have achieved and how good we have been," Bale said. "The league was disappointing but we won the Champions League. It turns out to be a great season.
"We let everyone else speak. We know how hungry we are in the changing room, how prepared and motivated we are."
Bale also said his remarkable bicycle kick was a career first.
"On the biggest stage in world football, to score a goal like that is a dream come true," Bale said. "I've actually never scored a bicycle kick before, so it's always been something I've wanted to do. I've had many attempts go close and it's nice to see one go in the back of the net in such an important contender.
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