Gareth Bale already had to miss Wales' Euro 2012 qualifier against England with a hamstring injury and now the Tottenham Hotspur winger is in a race against time in a bid to get fit for his club's UEFA Champions League clash with Real Madrid. Bale suffered a grade one hamstring strain while training with Wales and now he is questionable to play when Spurs head to the Bernabeu for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal tie.
Tottenham's head of medical services, Wayne Diesel, said: "Gareth did not report any hamstring issues when we assessed our players after our fixture with West Ham United which means he was free to report for international duty, nor did the Football Association of Wales raise any problems with us prior to his first training session with the national team on Tuesday following two days of rest."
"He was passed fit to train by the FAW medical team and it was only after 40 minutes of his first training session on Tuesday, which included some high intensity runs, Gareth complained of tightness in his right hamstring and was pulled out of the remainder of the session as a precaution."
"We requested the player be sent immediately for a scan which subsequently revealed the hamstring strain that forced his withdrawal from the squad. Gareth has returned and taken part in controlled straight-line running so we could assess him."
"We sent him for an ultrasound scan examination this afternoon and that has confirmed the presence of a minor grade one hamstring strain. Gareth has reported no pain or stiffness after taking part in the running this morning and we shall continue to monitor him and see how he responds to his conditioning program throughout the week."
Bale had just returned from a back injury that kept him out six weeks before injuring his hamstring. The Welshman became one of the best wingers in the world with a sensational 2010 in which he made good on the promise that led Spurs to buy him from Southampton when he was 17. Now 21, Bale is one of the most sought after player in the world with nearly every big club linked to him.
Not only has Bale been fantastic in all matches for Spurs, but he's been especially good in the Champions League. A hat trick at Inter Milan was the highlight of a run that saw him also make his mark felt in the home leg against Inter Milan as well as the entire group stage that saw Tottenham finish first. Real Madrid are the unquestioned favorites in this quarterfinal tie and if Tottenham have to play without Bale their chances of toppling the Spanish giants will only grow.