Real Madrid's Gareth Bale leaves the game during the Spanish La Liga soccer match between Real Madrid and Celta de Vigo at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (Photo: AP)
Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro says people need to appreciate his team mate Gareth Bale more and stop focusing on what he does away from the pitch.
Bale has scored his share of decisive goals in the most important games for Real but the Spanish media constantly accuse the Wales forward of lacking commitment to the cause.
"I'm a defender of Bale, he's an incredible player," Brazil international Casemiro told radio station Onda Cero on Friday.
"People only talk about the bad things he does off the pitch, but they don't talk about what he does well, like the goals he scored in finals that won us trophies."
Chief among the media's complaints is Bale's love of golf which was manifested in a banner he danced in front of with his Wales team mates reading 'Wales. Golf. Madrid - in that order'.
He is also criticised by the media and supporters for leaving matches early when he is injured in order to beat the traffic.
But Casemiro prefers to focus on Bale's incredible feats, such as his breathtaking goal against Barcelona in the 2014 Copa del Rey final and his decisive strikes against Atletico Madrid and Liverpool in the 2014 and 2018 Champions League finals.
"If he thinks it's ok to do these things then we should respect that," added the Brazilian.
"I don't care what he does off the pitch, when I think of Bale I think about what he does on the pitch and for me in that respect he is one of the best around."
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