Gareth Bale news: Real Madrid star left out of clash vs. Manchester City
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Gareth Bale left out of Real Madrid squad ahead of Champions League clash vs. Manchester City

Gareth Bale, Zinedine Zidane

Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale has been sent home from training and left out of the 24-man squad ahead of Friday’s Champions League clash against Manchester City, who lead 2-1 after the first leg at the Santiago Bernabeau.

According to the Manchester Evening News, Bale had gastroenteritis, and Real Madrid feared the bug could spread throughout the squad ahead of a vital clash at Etihad Stadium.

Gareth Bale was sent home by manager Zinedine Zidane, along with striker Luka Jovic as the boss looks to avoid any setbacks prior to playing for his team’s life in the Champions League. Yet Zizou felt more confident bringing Jovic than the Welshman upon naming the 24-man squad.

It’s also worth noting Sergio Ramos, who is suspended for the second leg, was named to the 24-man squad β€” something Zidane ensured to excuse upon naming his squad.

“The captain travels with the team although he will not be able to play in Manchester,” said Zidane.

Yet there was little to explain Bale’s absence from the team sheet. Those familiar with the Gareth Bale-Zidane Zidane dynamic might have a guess as to why.

It’s no secret that the Welshman is not one of Zidane’s favorites β€” but putting Jovic and former Manchester City man Brahim Diaz (who also sat out Wednesday) ahead says more than enough when it comes to Bale’s position in Madrid.

Los Blancos will be deeply reliant on Eden Hazard and Karim Benzema to make things happen upfront while the defense will have to make do without its captain Sergio Ramos in the second leg.