After helping LAFC to their first Premier League title on Saturday, Gareth Bale admitted he seems to have a knack for scoring in finals.
Bale scored a dramatic equalizer in the 128th minute of a thrilling final at Los Angeles Bank of California Stadium as LAFC defeated the Philadelphia Union 3-0 on penalties.
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The Welsh star’s goal was the last goal scored in MLS history and tied the game 3-3 after LAFC twice led to 10 men in overtime and then fell behind four minutes into stoppage time. drew 3-3.
It was Bale’s sixth goal in a grand final. Three of those came in the Champions League final – one against Atlético Madrid in 2014 and two, including a spectacular overhead kick, against Liverpool in 2018. He also scored the winner against Barcelona in the Copa del Rey final. Rey scored and then scored in 2014 to help Madrid win the title. The final of the Club World Cup in the same year.
“It’s always good to score in finals and I seem to have a knack for doing that,” Bale said.
“It’s huge. It’s important for the club, it’s important for the fans. We were 10 men and we didn’t really seem to get anything out of the game. So credit to everyone for continuing to push, fight and fight. . Like I said, it was great to get a goal and help the team. I’m not too sure where it will go, but it’s a great feeling.”
Bale joined LAFC on a free transfer this summer after his eight-year spell at Real Madrid ended.
But the fitness problems that plagued his final seasons in the Spanish capital have persisted since his arrival in Los Angeles, limiting him to just two games as LAFC won the Supporters’ Shield.
When he came off the bench in the seventh minute of overtime on Saturday, it was Bill’s first playoff appearance.
“It was a tough transition coming in without pre-season,” admitted Bale. “Trying to move back was tough, obviously moving with my family.
But I’ve tried to stay as fit as I can, I’ve tried to help the team as much as I can on and off the pitch and when you have moments like today it’s worth it. The most important thing was to win the goal. MLS Cup Final and we did it.”
The 33-year-old warned he is still not 100 per cent fit after his recent knock and admitted he is worried about his condition, just over two weeks before he leads Wales to their first World Cup since 1958.
He said: I am getting better and better as time goes by. “I think it’s been tough mentally leading up to the World Cup. You see how a lot of players are leaving the tournament and now they’re missing the World Cup.”
“It’s definitely been in the back of my mind and I’m trying to make sure I’m 100% fit.”
Wales’ first match at the World Cup, incidentally, will be against the USA on November 21. And LAFC head coach Steve Cherundolo, who won 87 caps for the United States, joked that he hoped Bale wouldn’t have the same impact against the national team. Americans
“I’m sure he won’t, but I’ll try,” Bill replied.