Gareth Bale has claimed that he chose to join LAFC because it suddenly ‘felt like home’ during negotiations.
The Wales international left Real Madrid in June following a dazzling nine-year career that included five Champions League championships and a slew of other major trophies.
There was much conjecture over his future, with Bale linked with a return to Wales to join Cardiff City. In the end, possibly against his better judgment, he chose to become the latest European star to join Major League Soccer, joining the LAFC squad that is already atop the overall standings.
So, what compelled Bale to go to Banc of California Stadium when he had so many other admirers on the other side of the Atlantic?
“The club is clearly on the rise,” he told ESPN’s Taylor Twellman and Jon Champion during halftime of LAFC’s 3-2 victory over rivals LA Galaxy on Friday.
“It’s very new, but it’s really glitzy, and it’s a very appealing club.” Just talking with them seemed like the appropriate thing to do. “It immediately felt like home.”
In addition to his many awards, Bale has played 540 club games for Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, and Real Madrid throughout his time in England and Spain. With 40 goals in 106 international appearances, the 32-year-old is Wales’ all-time leading striker. Bale just helped his country reach the World Cup for the first time since 1958.
That’s a tremendous resume, and Bale hopes to pass on some of his expertise to LAFC’s younger players during his tenure at the club.
“I can definitely come in and give what I can do in football, but I can also assist with the youth,” Bale stated. “Because it’s a very young squad here, I’m offering them advise, watching what I do in terms of professional level, and trying to assist them.”
“I believe the league is expanding, and it was an exciting opportunity that I thought was appropriate for me and my family.”
“I want to come here, I want to play games, I want to make my mark, and I want to do all I can to help LAFC attempt to win a trophy,” Bale concluded.