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Bale out of Copenhagen clash

ESPN staff
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Gareth Bale featured in Real Madrid's 1-0 derby loss to Atletico © Getty Images
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Gareth Bale's continuing fitness issues mean he misses Real Madrid's Champions League group game at home to FC Copenhagen at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday evening.

Bale has had a stuttering beginning to his Madrid career, which has included a goal on his debut at Villarreal in mid-September, but also his pulling out of a game at home to Getafe due to he himself not feeling 100 per cent confident of his own fitness.

He did then manage 45 minutes as a substitute in last weekend's 1-0 defeat to Atletico Madrid at the Bernabeu, only for news of another setback to be announced via a Madrid club statement after training on Tuesday afternoon.

"The player Gareth Bale did not train with the group because of a muscular problem in his left thigh," the statement said. "The diagnosis is dependent on tests to be carried tomorrow."

Bale has yet to complete 90 minutes since his £86 million move to Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur - the negotiation of which took all summer to complete, and meant he did not complete a proper pre-season with either Spurs or Madrid.

Both Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti and club president Florentino Perez have suggested in public that the player himself is not keen to risk playing when he does not feel fully fit.

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