Ancelotti defends Bale form

Bale, the world’s most-expensive player following his ??85m move from Tottenham to Real in 2013, has faced accusations in the Spanish media of playing as too much of an individual.

Real have lost to Valencia and Atletico Madrid since winning the Club World Cup – beating San Lorenzo 2-0 in the final with Bale scoring the second goal – on December 20.

“I am happy with the way that Bale is playing and he was not at fault for the (Atletico) defeat,” said Ancelotti.

“The problems were caused by the opposition and generally we didn’t have many chances.”

Bale had a goal correctly ruled out for offside against local rivals Atletico, and Ancelotti said the 25-year-old had put in a performance of endeavour and attacking threat.

“Apart from that [the offside goal], he was always trying and it was a difficult game for all the players.”

Bale was a key part of the team which won the Champions League and the Copa del Rey in his first season at the Bernabeu, scoring 22 goals in the process.

He also contributed strongly to the club’s record 22-game winning run this season, with 11 goals to his name in the 2013/14 campaign.

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has also publicly backed Bale, amid persistent rumours of interest in the player from Manchester United.

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