Ex-Wales international backs Bale to stay in Spain.

Former Wales midfielder Carl Fletcher says Gareth Bale isn’t a Real Madrid flop, and has advised the forward to reject a possible Premier League return and remain in Spain.

The Welsh star Bale enjoyed a brilliant debut campaign for Los Blancos, scoring in both their Champions League and Copa del Rey final triumphs, but couldn’t replicate the same form in his second season and was made the scapegoat for Real’s trophyless season.

However, Fletcher is convinced a good run with his national team will help him rediscover his form.

“Confidence is massive for a football player,” he told talkSPORT. “When Gareth plays for Wales he looks like he’s got all the confidence at the world, and he looks just a little bit off for Real Madrid at the minute.

“I think that will come with time, he’s said himself that he is happy at Real and in Spain and that he wants to do well. I think he’s done fantastically for a British player in La Liga, he won the Spanish Cup and Champions League in his first season.

“It’s not always going to be an upwards progression, but I think he’ll learn a lot from this season and I think he’ll be great for them.

“I do hope he stays out there, he’s fantastic player and to be at one of the top clubs on world football, that’s where he deserves to be. I’m pretty sure we’ll see a more confident and relaxed version of Gareth next season.”