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Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Gareth Bale will make his Real Madrid debut against Villarreal on Saturday.
The 24-year-old Welshman, who moved to the Spanish capital ahead of the transfer window closing a fortnight ago, has been blighted by a foot injury in recent months and only featured for 32 minutes for his country against Serbia on Tuesday evening. He has yet to play a full match this season.
Bale moved to Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in a £85.3million deal, becoming the world’s most expensive player in the process, and there has been considerable media hype concerning the move.
Ancelotti said he does not know whether he will start Bale against Villarreal or whether he will come off the bench, but the coach admits that he is settling in well at the La Liga side and is recovering from his injury.
At a press conference on Friday, he said: “Bale came here without having a normal pre-season, but his condition is not bad. He has no injuries, he is excited and very motivated.
“He’s arrived full of enthusiasm and he is very happy to be at the team he wanted to join. He is a humble player who likes to be with his team-mates. He fits in well with the squad.”
On Thursday, Bale admitted he was “behind everybody else physically”, but hoped he would be able to catch up quickly regarding his fitness. He said he is hoping to start against Villarreal.
Meanwhile, Ancelotti also confirmed on Friday that Bale will be used as a right-sided attacker by Los Merengues.