There are a number of veteran players of the Real Madrid dressing room who are departing this summer – including Gareth Bale and Marcelo, who are both out of contract
Image: Alvaro Medranda / Eurasia Sport Images / Getty Images)
Real Madrid are set to give a special send-off to their departing club captain, Marcelo – but will not make a similar offer to Gareth Bale as he leaves at the expiry of his contract in June.
Los Blancos defeated Liverpool in the Champions League final in late May to cap a memorable season for Carlo Ancelotti’s side. The success came within a month of Real Madrid securing their 35th La Liga title with four rounds of action remaining as they cantered to domestic glory.
Marcelo said his goodbyes to the club after it was confirmed he was leaving this summer at the end of his contract. The Brazilian veteran has spent 16 years at the Santiago Bernabeu and, while it is anticipated that he will return to his native Brazil, no future move has yet been confirmed. It is understood that Turkish giants Fenerbahce, now coached by Jorge Jesus, and Marseille are also interested in a move.
Marcelo’s glittering career in the Spanish capital saw him win 25 trophies – more than any other player in the club’s history after he surpassed the previous record held by club legend Paco Gento, who won 23 trophies with Los Blancos. Not only did Marcelo break the record, he also became the first non-Spanish player to captain Real Madrid to the league title and the Champions League crowns. The Brazilian assumed the leadership role at the start of the season after Sergio Ramos left to join Paris Saint-Germain.
That is the context in which the Brazilian is being offered a special farewell by the club, as per Diario AS, which will be on a par with the exits of club legends Iker Casillas and Sergio Ramos. He will be afforded a special press conference at the club’s facilities and will be allowed, alongside his family, to pose with the trophies he has won and say final farewells to the fans.
This same opportunity is not being given to Bale, who has also won five Champions League titles with the club. While the Welshman did say goodbye to Real Madrid’s fans in a lengthy open letter, he did not play a part in the club’s La Liga title celebrations, although he was alongside his teammates after their Champions League success.
Have Your Say! Which club should sign Gareth Bale this summer? Tell us what you think here.
Catherine Ivill / Getty Images)
Bale is leaving Real Madrid at the end of the season upon the expiration of his contract, bringing an end to his nine-year stay in the Spanish capital. Bale recently hit out at Spanish media outlet Marca as being “disgusting” for comparing him to a parasite over claims he is sucking money out of the Spanish giants. Bale concluded a rant against the reports by stating: “We all know who the real parasite is!” The forward had faced fresh criticism from the Madrid media after his starring role for Wales in their play-off win over Austria in March.
Bale’s fall from prominence at Real Madrid in recent years has been striking and he went six months without featuring for the club this season, although he regained fitness during the international breaks to represent Wales. He has suffered multiple fitness setbacks along the way and became a peripheral player during his final years in Madrid.