Ancelotti’s row over "egotistic" Gareth Bale could hint at his Real Madrid plan

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Carlo Ancelotti revealed after leaving Real Madrid that his row with Florentino Perez "exploded" after he subbed Gareth Bale for shooting instead of passing to Karim Benzema during a clash against Valencia.

The veteran Italian boss is heading towards another spell working with the Wales captain following the end of his loan at Tottenham – with one year remaining on his Bernabeu contract.

Although the 31-year-old said earlier in the season that he had every intention to spend one more season in Spain, he has recently refused to comment while admitting that his decision would cause "chaos".

Having turned his back on Everton despite agreeing to a four-and-a-half year deal in late 2019, Ancelotti and Perez look to have put any discontent regarding Bale behind them.

During his time at Napoli between 2018 and 2019, the former Chelsea and PSG boss spoke about his relationship with Bale following their Champions League triumph together in the Spanish capital.

Ancelotti said: “Altruism in a squad is important, because if there’s something that drives me mad, it’s people who are egotistic in a match situation.

“Those moments when a player really should pass the ball and he doesn’t. I paid for this in my own career.

“The reason the row with Florentino Perez exploded in Madrid was my substitution of Bale against Valencia.

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"Bale should’ve passed it to Karim Benzema, who would’ve scored in front of an open goal, but instead he took the shot. I hauled Bale off and the chaos erupted.

"Perhaps excessive altruism is also a limitation in a striker, as he needs a bit of egotism, but not if it’s over the top. It seems bad to say this, but if Napoli’s forwards were a little more egotistical, we might get a few advantages out of that.”

Those comments suggest that he was far from happy with the actions of Bale, who has a total of 105 goals across 251 games for Real, and grabbed 16 in 34 for Spurs this season.

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However, Ancelotti is likely to recognise that his playing squad is not what it once was, and giving Bale his last season as a regular starter might be his best option going forward.

During their time together Bale made a total of 92 appearances under the former Toffees boss, scoring 39 goals and creating a further 31 across only 7367 minutes of football.

During their first full season together they lifted both the Copa del Rey and Champions League, winning the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup the following season before the manager departed.

While Los Blancos won La Liga under Zinedine Zidane in 2019/20, they never looked like catching Atletico Madrid this season and have had no players called up for Spain's Euro 2020 squad.

Bale has said of his own plans this week ahead of Wales Euro 2020 campaign: “Obviously there’s been a lot of things written about whether I’m doing this and doing that.

“For me, the main thing is I don’t want to say anything that’s going to cause more chaos or more drama or cause a distraction. I just want to focus on the Euros.

"I don’t want to say anything that is going to cause any problems on what I am doing or what I am not doing. When the Euros finishes for us then I will sit down and decide what I want to do.”

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