Coleman defends Bale decision
Wales manager Chris Coleman has revealed that he never had any plans to play the world’s most expensive player, Gareth Bale, against Macedonia yesterday.
Coleman raised fans’ expectations when he named Bale on the bench, despite the Real Madrid midfielder having not played a game since July.
But, supporters were left disappointed after Bale spent the whole game on the side-lines, watching his country crash to a 2-1 defeat.
According to Sky Sports, after being quizzed about his team selection, Coleman reacted angrily, claiming that Bale was not fit enough to be playing any part of the game.
Asked why then, was Bale named on the bench, the Welshman revealed that it was just a ploy, to try and change the opposition manager’s way of thinking.
Sky Sports have quoted Coleman as saying: “What part of he’s not fit are you not listening to? Why bring him on if he’s not fit?
“You think I would not have used him if he was fit? I don’t mind what other people think. What I look at is the opposition. If I’m the opposition manager and Bale is on the bench, maybe it would affect his thinking.
“If he was fit he would have played. I spoke to him, he is not ready. Simple. I haven’t conned the supporters to say he might play. If there was a chance he would have played, but there wasn’t. We can’t take the risk.”
After being asked about losing his passport earlier this week, which meant that he was late linking up with the Welsh squad, Coleman replied was reportedly even angrier in his response.
Asked if he was going to apologise about the incident, he said: “To who? What are you talking about? What you don’t know is what we do day to day.
“ All the work had been done. If we’d won you wouldn’t make much out of it, but you will because we lost and that’s up to you.”
Finally asked about the game itself, Coleman was again unhappy, criticising the pitch, and Swiss referee Sascha Kever.
“The pitch was not great and didn’t help the way we play, but we stuck at it and were probably beaten by the pitch at the end of the day. They can feel very lucky to get three points”, Coleman said.
“Nowadays the rules are you can’t pull shirts – I’m 60 yards away from both boxes and I can tell you there were a lot of shirts being pulled.
“The referee is closer than I am, why can’t he see it? There were a few incidents we weren’t happy with at all, one or two bad challenges that on another day are red cards.
“But we got on with it, we didn’t come for one point, we came for three. We took the game to them and we came away with nothing. Unfortunately sometimes in football you don’t always get what you deserve.”