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Bale benched as Theo makes first LaLiga start for Real Madrid

Zinedine Zidane has named the under-fire Gareth Bale among the substitutes for Real Madrid’s match against Levante.

Gareth Bale has dropped to the bench for Real Madrid’s LaLiga clash with Levante on Saturday.

The 28-year-old started the champions’ opening two games against Deportivo La Coruna and Valencia but has been named among the substitutes for the visit of Juan Muniz’s side, which comes just four days after he played the full 90 minutes of Wales’ World Cup qualifying win away to Moldova.

Bale came in for criticism for his performance in the 2-2 draw with Valencia but his form was defended by head coach Zinedine Zidane this week.

Keylor Navas has been left out of the squad after a gruelling international break with Costa Rica, meaning Kiko Casilla starts in goal. Casemiro and Isco are among the substitutes.

Theo Hernandez will play his first league game for the club, while Marcos Llorente and Lucas Vazquez have also been drafted into the side.

Toni Kroos starts in midfield in what will be his 100th appearance in Spain’s top flight.

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