Gareth Bale a doubt for Wales’ Nations League clash against Belgium with star struggling with MLS schedule and jet lag
GARETH BALE is a doubt for Wales’ Nations League clash in Belgium next week.
The Dragons captain, 33, will turn out for MLS side LAFC against Houston Dynamo in the early hours of Monday morning.
Then Bale is to take a 10½-hour flight to London from Los Angeles on Tuesday, just two days before the Brussels tussle.
But with time zones, jet lag and fatigue all factors, Wales boss Robert Page will not take any risks with him ahead of the World Cup.
Page said: “We know he’ll be affected. There will be a lot of planning as regards to if he is going to be ready for the game against Belgium. If not, we might have to leave it for the Poland game.
“We want him in top condition. We are not going to jeopardise him.”
Wales host Poland three days later on September 25 but could already be confined to last place in League A Group 4 if they lose to Belgium and Poland get at least a point against the Netherlands.
And Page will need all the firepower he can get as Wales have picked up just one win in their last six games – the crucial World Cup play-off qualifier against Ukraine.
Bale has been out of sorts since his move to MLS too, scoring just two goals in 11 games in all competitions.
In fact, LAFC have performed better when the Welshman has not been on the pitch.
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MLS reporter Matthew Doyle revealed LAFC have a goal difference of -7 with the five-time Champions League winner on the pitch in the 375 minutes he has played.
But when Bale is either subbed off or absent, LAFC are plus 33 in the goals department in 2,800 minutes.
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