Rivals will fear Bale presence, says Coleman

Chris Coleman believes the aura of Gareth Bale, the world's most expensive player, can help bring success to Wales.

Gareth Bale

The 24-year-old joined up with the Wales squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Macedonia and Serbia, just hours after being unveiled to 30,000 Real Madrid fans in the wake of his world record 100million euro (£85.3m) move from Tottenham.

As key as the forward had proved to be for Spurs, and may prove to be for Real, he is every bit as vital for Wales.

During Coleman's reign, Bale has scored five out of eight goals and the Dragons have occasionally looked toothless without him, markedly in last month's goalless draw with the Republic of Ireland.

The Wales boss admits Bale, who has not played since July, will not take part in a full 90 minutes in either of the upcoming qualifiers and will not take any risks with his fitness, but remains hopeful he will play some part.

And he hopes the mere presence of a player who now enjoys one of the highest profiles in the global game, will be enough to instil fear into the hearts of their opponents, starting with Macedonia on Friday.

"The fact he is in our squad is enough," said Coleman. "If I am the manager of Macedonia and I know he is on his way over, that is a threat in itself.

"I experienced that in my own career when I played in good teams with some special players, it makes a difference when you are lining up in the tunnel.

"With Blackburn, we had Alan Shearer playing for us, and we knew if we kept a clean sheet we would win, because he would score. Even better than that, the opposition knew it.

"When you have a player of that importance in your team it doesn't half give you confidence."

Shearer went on to be the world's most expensive player for a while, when he joined Newcastle for £15million in 1996.

Coleman also praised Bale for the respect he had shown to Wales by dashing back from his Madrid appearance to join up with his colleagues, and believes it sets a perfect example to his team-mates.

"If you imagine what is going on in his mind, the experience he has had, it's probably a relief that he has signed because it has been going on for so long," said Coleman.

"It has finally happened for him and he is dealing with all that.

"I had already spoken with him the day before and he told me that he was flying in to Madrid for the unveiling and when it was done he would jump on a flight and come straight back.

"So I just said, 'text me when you arrive back at the hotel so I know your movements'.

"That is exactly what he did. That is the attitude you are looking for from your players, all of your players."



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