Bale to miss Tottenham’s Europa League tie on paternity leave

Gareth Bale will not feature for Tottenham Hotspur in their Europa League game against Maribor on Thursday after being granted paternity leave by Andre Villas-Boas. The Wales international will however return to play former club Southampton in the Premier League on Sunday, the Daily Mail has reported.

Bale missed Tottenham’s 4-2 defeat to Chelsea at White Hart Lane last weekend when his partner went into labour only hours before kick-off, with Bale leaving the ground to be at her side.

Villas-Boas revealed that he had spoken with Bale regularly about whether or not he should take a break to be with his partner and new-born baby, with the Head Coach adding he left the decision to Bale in order to ensure his mind was made up and his thoughts were focused for when he did return.

The Mail claims Bale found the prospect of playing his former team Southampton at their own St. Mary’s ground too enticing to pass up, having left the Saints for Spurs in 2007. Tottenham paid Southampton £10m for Bale’s services after Bale had made fewer than 50 appearances for the south coast side.

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