Gareth Bale expressed satisfaction with how he is settling in at Real Madrid after making his second appearance for the club from the bench in Tuesday’s 6-1 Champions League win at Galatasaray.
Bale started and scored in Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Villarreal in La Liga, but he was withdrawn by coach Carlo Ancelotti on the hour mark. Ancelotti subsequently said it was important to be “careful” as former Tottenham man had not had a “normal” pre-season, and Bale was named as a substitute for the Champions League Group B opener in Istanbul.
The Wales winger was introduced for Isco late on at the Ali Sami Yen Spor Kompleksi, and played a role in two of Madrid’s late goals as the Turkish side crumbled. He also almost got on the scoresheet himself, but saw a powerful shot saved by home keeper Fernando Muslera.
Bale told Marca that he was happy at being eased gradually into the Madrid side.
“I played 60 minutes at the weekend, and 15 today,” Bale said. “I want to improve and to settle in as quickly as I can.”
The game had not been as easy for Madrid as the scoreline suggested, while the result was important to get his new side off to a good start in the competition, Bale said.
"The first goal, from Isco, gave us the confidence to beat them,” he said. “I don’t think they were an easy opponent at all. We want to win the Champions League, and it’s important to start like this.”
Isco -- a fellow new signing this summer -- told Madrid’s official website that he was “happy” with a goal and a win on his first European outing for Madrid, especially as the game had been tricky to begin with.
“It was a difficult ground and we got a clear result,” he said. “I believe they began the game with a lot of intensity and pressured us a lot. But we woke up with the goal and you have seen the best Madrid take the three points.”