Gareth Bale's former manager at Tottenham Hotspur Harry Redknapp said he is "surprised" at what's happened between the player and Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane.
The Welsh winger was yet again left out of a pre-season friendly squad by Zidane, this time against Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg. It follows a summer of speculation about Bale's future in the Spanish capital. Last month, Zidane said it would be "best for everyone" at the Bernabeu if he left. He had been expected to sign for Chinese side Jiangsu Suning FC, but it was blocked at the final hour by Real Madrid.
This was followed by reports in the Spanish media that Gareth Bale had been spotted playing golf when absent from training due to an illness. At the time Zidane said, "I won't tell him off or tell him he's not allowed to do it - he's old enough to do what he wants and he probably had his reasons."
— AS English (@English_AS) August 1, 2019
Speaking to BBC Radio Wales, Redknapp said, "I managed him for four years and he’s absolutely low maintenance, not a problem to anybody, gets on with his football, so I’m surprised really the way it’s evolved at Real Madrid, surprised at how Zinedine Zidane came out and suddenly said he’s not wanted here.
"It wasn’t the ideal way to deal with it and Gareth’s not going to be pushed in to or rushed into going somewhere he doesn’t want to go. He’s not a lad who’s in the dressing room causing you problems or upsetting the rest of the spirit in the team, he’s not one of them lads, so I don’t know why you would treat Gareth like that. It was a bit strange."
Bale is still under contract at the Santiago Bernabeu until 2022. It is believed the contract is worth €18 million a year.