Wales and Los Angeles FC winger Gareth Bale said on Monday he had decided to end his football career, both at club and international level.
“After careful and thoughtful consideration, I announce my immediate retirement from club and international football,” Bale said on Twitter.
— Gareth Bale (@GarethBale11) January 9, 2023
Regarded as one of the greatest wingers of his generation and one of the greatest Welsh players of all time, Bale, 33, enjoyed a successful career in England with Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur, before moving to Real Madrid in 2013 for a world-record transfer fee of €100.8 million.
There, along with Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema, they formed the forward trio dubbed ‘BBC,’ helping the Spanish giants win the Champions League five times.
His last club appearance was with Los Angeles FC, where he scored a header to tie the MLS Cup final in the 128th minute, helping his team win their first-ever domestic league title.
The winger also left his mark on the international stage with the Welsh national team, where he is the record holder for appearances (111) and goals (41).
Bale represented Wales in the UEFA Euro 2016, as they reached the semi-finals, scoring three goals. He later featured for the side at Euro 2020 and was pivotal in Wales’ qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, ending a 64-year appearance drought at the World Cup.