Welcome to Hollywood, Gareth Bale.
And while Bale won't play after just landing stateside and not yet training with his new teammates, it’s an important step toward the former Real Madrid and Tottenham forward beginning his MLS career. We will note: He technically is eligible now that the Secondary Transfer window is open (began July 7).
Bale officially signed in late June, penning a 12-month contract through 2023 using Targeted Allocation Money (TAM). The 32-year-old’s deal includes options through 2024.
Addressing Bale’s status for the Heineken Rivalry Week matchup on Wednesday, LAFC head coach Steve Cherundolo had called the arrival process “ongoing.” There’s a conclusion, at least, and now it’s a matter of when Bale debuts.
LAFC brass, when discussing the marquee move, have stressed not rushing Bale into the mix – especially given his injury history. And the Black & Gold are afforded that luxury, to a degree, since they sit atop the Supporters’ Shield standings with an attack that already features Carlos Vela, Cristian Arango, Brian Rodriguez and more.
Bale, who in early June helped Wales qualify for their first World Cup in 64 years, will surely assume a key role in LAFC’s plans sooner rather than later.
As for when that arrives? We’ll have to wait and see.