Gareth Bale’s return is delayed once more after suffering a fresh thigh injury just days after returning to training after more than a month out with a calf injury and is likely to be out for the rest of the year.
The Real Madrid and Wales International forward will be having 19th layoff during his four years at the Bernabeu after joining Real from Tottenham for a then world-record transfer fee of £85.
Thus far, Bale has missed 40 of Real Madrid’s last 60 matches while also being absent for Wales in crucial World Cup qualifiers against Serbia, Georgia and the Republic of Ireland.
Wales manager Chris Coleman received the news of Bale’s fresh injury at the Stade de France ahead of a friendly against France — a game his side lost 2-0.
His team, who were denied a place in the World Cup finals, will also play Panama at the Cardiff City Stadium on Tuesday.
“I don’t know the full extent of it,” Coleman said. “He’ll be devastated. We haven’t had dialogue with Real Madrid, but we’ll speak with Gareth in the next few days and find out exactly what it is. It’s bad luck, bad news, and he’ll be gutted.”
“The harder you try to get back you get a setback and sometimes you have to go through that. He’ll get over and he’ll be back. He just needs to get settled again and get his fitness. He needs to take his time and not rush himself back.”
“Some players as they get older they change their schedule,” Coleman added. “That’s up to him and Real Madrid. When he’s with us all our players have different programmes at different times of the week because we know what they do with their clubs. We have to make sure we taper that in with the way we work.”