Gareth Bale’s LAFC stint was brief but memorable as the Welsh striker hung up his boots. From an academy at Southampton to making a name for himself at Tottenham and stardom at Real Madrid and the LAFC, Bale has won just about everything there is to win and also caught the attention of the Welsh national team.
Bale’s last club football moment, when he rose over Jack Elliott of the Philadelphia Union to score a 128-minute header to set off a penalty shoot-out in LAFC’s first-ever MLS Cup victory, is a fitting end to a career rife with historic moments . for Bale.
He has won the Champions League five times, Club World Cup four times, European Super Cup three times, La Liga and Spanish Super Cup three times, MLS Cup, MLS Fans Shield, Spanish Cup, Golden Boot for 2017-18 Club World Cup, Premier League Player of the Year 2012 –2013, 2008 EFL Cup trophy and six Welsh Footballer of the Year awards. Bale also changed the definition of transfers when his move from Tottenham to Real Madrid in the summer of 2013 made him the first €100m player since Los Blancos paid the Spurs $111m for Bale. It turned out that the money was well spent.
“We want to thank Gareth for everything he has brought to our club,” said LAFC co-president and general manager John Torrington. “He came here with the goal of winning the L.A. championship and, like everywhere else in his career, he succeeded. It was an honor for me to end the career of one of the most talented, dynamic and exciting players of my generation. with the LAFC title and we wish Gareth, his wife Emma and their family all the best in their future endeavours.”
Retiring at 33 to pursue new adventures, Bale has had an impressive career. Moving from left-back to wide, Bale had devastating speed to beat anyone in his path, but even as injuries and age slowed that pace down, Bale was able to turn into a more targeted striker and continue his career.
Bale has 186 goals and 139 assists in 554 appearances for four clubs. The last two goals of his career also came in handy, with Bale also scoring from the penalty spot in the World Cup against the United States. This World Championship performance was the first of his career and Wale’s first World Championship since 1958.