Welsh football legend Gareth Bale has just announced his retirement from football at 33 years old.
In a statement, he wrote, “After careful and thoughtful consideration, I announce my immediate retirement from club and international football. I feel incredibly fortunate to have realized my dream of playing the sport I love.”
Bale made his professional debut for Southampton in 2006. Since then, he has done more than just play the sport he loves. He has amassed an extensive trophy collection, including more than 20 titles.
Now, as he bids goodbye to the sport, we’re honoring his illustrious career.
1 English League Cup Trophy
After the Welsh made his debut for Southampton in the 2006-2007 season, he transferred to another Premier League team: Tottenham Hotspur.
However, not many recall that at Southampton, Bale mainly played as a left-back. But his time at Tottenham allowed him to shift to a more offensive role. He started to become one of the integral figures of the team, especially in their Champions League bid, which allowed him to shine as an attacker.
While he played for Tottenham, Bale was also named the PFA Young Player of the Year and the Premier League Player of the season in 2013.
5 Champions League Trophies
4 FIFA Club World Cup Titles
3 Spanish Championships
3 UEFA Supercup Trophies
1 Spanish Cup Title
3 Spanish Super Cup Championships
The bulk of Gareth Bale’s trophies came from his time at Real Madrid. From Tottenham, he moved to one of the biggest football clubs in the world for a world-record transfer fee of £85.1 million.
Safe to say it was worth it.
Bale helped the club win numerous trophies across different competitions, most notably, the Copa del Rey and the UEFA Champions League.
In fact, one of Gareth Bale’s most memorable moments was in the 2018 Champions League Final. He scored two goals for Real Madrid, one of which was an overhead kick — an iconic moment not just in his career, but in Champions League history.
After years with the team, Bale has made many memories with Real Madrid, and many trophies to go with them. But eventually, he moved on to another club, this time on a different continent.
Los Angeles FC
1 MLS Cup Championship
1 Supporters’ Shield Trophy
After taking on arguably two of the most competitive football leagues in the world, Bale transferred to the MLS club, Los Angeles FC in July 2022. And in a short time, he was already able to find success with the team.
In his first season with LAFC, he helped the American club win not one, but two trophies in one season: the Supporters’ Shield and the MLS Cup.
With this, he is one of the few players who have won titles in three different leagues.
Although Gareth Bale’s trophies mostly encompass his club career, he has still brought so much honor and pride to his home country, Wales.
Over the last few years, he helped the Welsh football team make it to the 2022 World Cup — the country’s first time in the tournament since the 50s. It was a historic moment for Wales, and for Bale as well, as this marked his debut World Cup appearance.
But apart from reaching the biggest stage of football, Bale also competed in several other tournaments for the country. In total, he earned 111 appearances and scored 41 international goals, the most for any Welsh player in history.
Undoubtedly, Gareth Bale has had quite a career and is deserving to be considered one of the best players of this generation.
Banner image from Squawka on Twitter.