‘No friction between Bale and Ronaldo’, says Wales star’s agent

There is no hatred or resentment between Real Madrid pair Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo, according to the Wales star’s agent, Jonathan Barnett.

Bale replaced the Portuguese international as the world’s most expensive player when he joined Madrid from Tottenham in 2013 and there’s been constant speculation about how they get on.

However, Barnett, 65, insists there is no strain on the relationship between the two players.

“They don’t go out eating every night together, but it’s fine,” he told the Guardian. “There’s no hatred there.

“Gareth is a quiet guy. They’re complete opposites. But I think Gareth can learn a little bit from Ronaldo as well, interacting maybe a little bit. But he wants his own life and he lives it.”

Since moving to Spain, Bale has won the Champions League and the Copa del Rey with Los Blancos, while he has also helped Wales qualify for their first major tournament in nearly 60 years.

As well winning team honours, though, Barnett says the 26-year-old is focused on becoming the world’s top player.

“Gareth is a great footballer, he doesn’t want anything more,” he added. “He has some very good endorsements, but his whole life is to be the best footballer in the world.

“I don’t think he wants to be the best model in the world or the best underwear seller. That’s not him.”

Despite the success in his first year in the Spanish capital, Bale did endure some darker days last season.

There was criticism from some sections of the support with Madrid forced to watch on as rivals Barcelona secured the treble, but Barnett feels there were other factors behind the fans’ frustrations being taken out on his client.

And he says he expects things to change, adding that Bale will not be forced out of Spain in the coming years.

“I think there’s a great love of Ronaldo [at Madrid],” he stated. “I think that the new guard is coming and there’s some resentment, perhaps, to that.

“But I think things will change. Gareth’s now playing in a better position [more centrally], where he wants to play. I’ve always said it, I think he’ll be the best player in the world in the next couple of years.”