Gareth Bale can “help fill the void” left by Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure from Real Madrid, says the Spanish side’s new coach Julen Lopetegui.

Wales forward Bale had been linked with a move away from the Bernabeu after failing to hold down a regular first-team spot under previous coach Zinedine Zidane last season.

But Ronaldo’s £99m switch to Juventus means Bale is back in favour.

“Gareth is happy to play at Real Madrid,” Lopetegui said.

“Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the main players in the recent history of Real Madrid. He expressed a desire to leave and we allowed him to.

“Gareth Bale is a magnificent player, with so many qualities. He can help fill the void.”

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Gareth Bale can “help fill the void” left by Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure from Real Madrid, says the Spanish side’s new coach Julen Lopetegui. Wales forward Bale had been linked with a move away from the Bernabeu after failing to hold down a regular first-team spot under previous coach Zinedine Zidane...