Gareth Bale: Real Madrid star welcomed 'like a god' in China - Giggs

Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale has scored 26 goals for Wales in 68 appearances
China Cup: China v Wales
Venue: Guangxi Sports Center, Nanning Date: Thursday, 22 March Kick-off: 11:35 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC One Wales, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary.

Gareth Bale is ready to star in the China Cup after being welcomed to China like a "god", according to Wales manager Ryan Giggs.

The Real Madrid forward trained on Tuesday just four hours after travelling almost 7,500 miles from Spain to China.

Bale will play some part in Thursday's match against China, having been greeted by hordes of fans on his arrival in Nanning.

"He's used to that," said Giggs.

"It's the same when Becks [David Beckham] came into the [Manchester United] team. He took the limelight away from me.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Gareth Bale arrives for China Cup with Wales

"Gareth would have been out here in the Far East plenty of times with Real Madrid.

"Huge teams like United, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, the players are used to the adulation they get especially in this part of the world because footballers are treated like gods."

Thursday's opening match of the China Cup will be Giggs' first in charge of Wales since succeeding Chris Coleman as manager.

Having once been the most expensive footballer in the world, Bale's profile was one of the reasons why Wales were invited to take part in the friendly tournament.

It has been reported the amount of money Wales receive for their participation in China could depend on Bale's involvement.

Asked if financial implications could have a bearing on whether the 28-year-old could feature or not, Giggs said: "Yeah, of course."

The former Manchester United winger then added: "It's about all the players and getting feedback from them, how they feel… whether we should start players, give players a half, give players an hour, constantly monitoring them.

"We are able to use six subs so I will probably use all of them because a lot of players have played a lot of football and there are other players who need minutes as well."

Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale joined a Wales training session after only four hours in China after his flight touched down

Bale is a hugely influential figure for Wales, sitting second in the country's all-time scoring charts with 26 goals, two behind Ian Rush.

The former Tottenham player has been hampered by injury this season but scored after coming on as a substitute for Real in Sunday's 6-3 win over Girona.

Although Real have a Champions League quarter-final against Juventus on 3 April, manager Zinedine Zidane has not given Giggs any specific instructions about how much Bale is allowed to play during Wales' two friendly fixtures in China.

"No, it's important the relationship with all the clubs. I've not spoken to Zidane, but I've spoken to Gareth," said Giggs.

"I've been in contact with him all the last few months regularly. I'm not stupid because it's an important part of the season.

"Any risks...stupid risks I won't be taking. But also it's my first game and I want to get my best team out there."

Top Stories