After winning it all and running the end of his contract with Real Madrid, Welsh soccer star Gareth Bale is set to make his MLS debut with LAFC after announcing he signed with the club.
LAFC officially announced the signing of Gareth Bale, who signed a 12-month contract with the option to extend through 2024.
Although he had initially earned an annual salary of $34.90 million with the Royal Whites of the Spanish capital, Bale will be earning no more than $1.3 million with LAFC.
“Gareth is one of the most dynamic and exciting players of his generation,” said LAFC Co-President & General Manager John Thorrington. “Adding a player who brings his talent and experience at the highest levels is an incredible opportunity to improve our Club.”
“I am grateful to Gareth’s management team who helped make this happen,” he added. “It is clear that Gareth is highly motivated to continue to win trophies, and we are elated that he has made the choice to join LAFC and help lead us in our ultimate goal of winning championships.”
LAFC Lead Managing Owner Larry Berg echoed Thorrington’s sentiments, praising the player’s arrival to the club.
“Bringing a player and a person of Gareth’s caliber to LAFC is a historic moment for Los Angeles, MLS, and the game in the United States,” said Berg. “On behalf of the entire LAFC community, I am honored to welcome Gareth, his wife Emma, and their children to LA, and I am confident they will fall in love with our incredible city.”
After finishing his contract with Real Madrid, Bale initially was touted to return to his hometown club, Cardiff City. However, the club is currently playing in the second-tier league, a prospect that would have been a downgrade for a player of Bale’s caliber.
Instead, the Champions League winner opted for a move to MLS.
“I am extremely excited for this move to LAFC,” said Bale. “This is the right place for me and my family and the right time in my career, and I cannot wait to get started working with the team and getting ready to win more trophies in Los Angeles.”
Gareth Bale is the second high-profile European signing for the club, right after Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini confirmed his move to LAFC earlier in June.
The pair had previously faced off in the Champions League, which saw Bale triumph over his future teammate in the 2016-2017 Final.
Bale and Chiellini will officially join the team on July 7 when the Secondary Transfer Window opens. They are also tipped to make their debut against city rivals LA Galaxy.