Gareth Bale 'Fully Fit' and 'Raring to Go' Ahead of Wales' 2020 Euro Qualifiers

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIMarch 23, 2019

CARDIFF, WALES - NOVEMBER 19: Gareth Bale of Wales during the Wales Training Session at The Vale Resort on November 19, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Athena Pictures/Getty Images)
Athena Pictures/Getty Images

Real Madrid star Gareth Bale says he's "fully fit" and "raring to go" for Wales ahead of their 2020 European Championship qualifier against Slovakia on Sunday.

The 29-year-old told a pre-match press conference he is looking forward to the game and dismissed criticism over his fitness record this season.

"I am fully fit and ready to go. I am enjoying being here and I am excited for the new campaign. I have only had one injury. I have been fine and playing.

"I've scored a decent amount of goals and I am raring to go. I want to keep doing as much as I can to help the (Wales) team and so does every player.

"So I certainly don't feel the pressure to produce. I just want to go out there, give my best for my country, score goals, create goals, defend, whatever I can to help the team."

Bale has had a tough time at the Santiago Bernabeu this season, and his injury record at the club has come under scrutiny:

The Welshman has also found himself on the bench at times because of the emergence of Brazilian starlet Vinicius Junior, who has enjoyed an impressive first season in La Liga.

Bale has still managed 14 goals in 35 games for Los Blancos in the current campaign, although that does not appear to have impressed supporters:

The Welshman also seems to have become a target for the Spanish press:

The return of Zinedine Zidane has also led to speculation Bale could leave Real Madrid in the summer transfer window, per Nick Wright at Sky Sports. Prior to Zidane's departure in May 2018, there was speculation Bale could exit the Santiago Bernabeu after losing his place as a first-team regular.

Bale may therefore be relieved to be back with the Wales squad, as he rarely fails to deliver in his national team's colours. 

The forward is his country's all-time top scorer and hit seven goals in 11 games during qualifying for Euro 2016. Wales made it all the way to the semi-finals at the tournament before being beaten by eventual winners Portugal.

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