Wales manager Chris Coleman decided not to play Gareth Bale on Friday night against Macedonia, citing match fitness as the issue. But that didn’t stop Bale from making headlines yet again. The world’s most expensive player was warming up during the halftime break when two Macedonia fans tried to hug him. Apparently not receptive to affection from the opposing side, Bale pushed them away.
Now, the Football Association of Wales (FAW) will review player security, which they insist has always been strong. However, having a super-mega star like Bale traveling with the Welsh team is unchartered territory, and FAW will need to consider whether there is more that can be done to protect their big stars. FAW was also careful to stress that, although Wales took a security staff along when traveling abroad, it was up to local football associations to create a secure environment inside their stadiums. It was Macedonia that should have taken steps to increase security and make sure that fans were unable to approach Bale during his warm up.
In other Gareth Bale news, fans of Northern Ireland displayed their sense of humor on Friday night as their side fell 4-2 to Portugal. Northern Ireland were winning 2-1 before Cristiano Ronaldo decided to dial up the heat. Even as Ronaldo scored a hat trick to put Portugal ahead, the home side’s supporters chanted, “You’re just a cheap Gareth Bale” at the fellow Real Madrid player.