Gareth Bale has admitted to playing with "anger" after Zinedine Zidane attempted to force him out of Real Madrid in the summer, but the Wales forward insists he will not let it distract him when playing for club or country.
The 30-year-old had been told he could leave the Spanish giants after falling out of favour under Zidane, but he has since forced his way back into the Frenchman’s plans after a move to Chinese club Jiangsu Suning fell through.
Bale is expected to feature for Wales in their European Qualifier against Slovakia on Thursday, live on Sky Sports, and said he is not unsettled about his future.
He said: You play with a lot of emotion. Anger comes into it of course, but I haven’t got anything to clear my mind about.
I try and give my best whether here [with Wales] or in Madrid and I will continue to do that.
Wales boss Ryan Giggs believes Bale’s return to the Real Madrid starting XI can help the national side in their European qualification bid.
I think now, looking from the outside, things have improved, Giggs said.
The way that he’s playing – which is all that footballers want to do, they want to play, they want to get minutes, they want to do well – I’ve always said he’s at a fantastic club.
Of course, it would have unsettled him because it was apparently very close for him going.
But things might have changed. Things do change quite quickly in football and now he’s playing, he’s loved, he’s happy, and I expect him to carry on doing what he’s doing for Real Madrid.
If Gareth Bale is at your club and he’s training well and he gets the chance to play, he’s always going to keep you interested because he can turn a game on its head, he can score goals and he’s such an asset.
So I’m not surprised in that respect. I was surprised with what happened in the summer – I think everyone from the outside thought it was a bit strange, but it seems like everything has gone a bit quiet now.
I think that’s all you ask for – for players to be in good form for their clubs and then take it into the international arena.
Bale’s summer feud with Zidane
Jonathan Barnett, Bale’s agent, was angered by Zidane’s comments in the summer, calling him a disgrace and questioning how he could show such little respect for a player that has done so much for Real Madrid.
Zidane hit back, however, insisting he has never disrespected anybody – certainly not a player and claimed Bale did not feature against Bayern because he refused to play.
Bale also admitted he was not playing happy for Madrid at the start of the season.
The winger told Sky Sports News: I wouldn’t say I’m playing happy but I’m playing, when I am playing I am professional and I am always giving all I can, whether that be for club or country.
I’m sure there’ll be plenty more turbulence, to be honest. I suppose it is something you will have to speak to Real Madrid about and it’s between me and them, and we will have to come to some sort of conclusion.