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Team GB football manager Stuart Pearce won't kick up a fuss over Gareth Bale
2:21pm Thursday 26th July 2012 in Sport
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GREAT Britain boss Stuart Pearce will not be making a complaint to FIFA about Gareth Bale ’s withdrawal from Olympic duty with a back injury.
The former Saints starlet was not selected in Pearce's 18-man squad after reporting that he would not be fit enough to take part.
Yet, with GB set to take on Senegal in their opening game at Old Trafford tonight, the 23-year-old played and scored for his club in their pre-season match with the Los Angeles Galaxy in the United States on Tuesday.
It immediately led to a string of complaints, with former Wales skipper Robbie Savage and England striker Gary Lineker expressing their surprise at Bale’s presence on Tottenham's tour.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter weighed into the argument, claiming that he would be willing to sanction Bale being suspended until the end of Olympic competition on August 12 should the FA lodge an official objection.
However, that will not happen.
Aside from the fact it would look petty given Bale would not miss any competitive matches even if he was suspended, Pearce is eager to maintain his focus on tonight’s game.
The FA and British Olympic Association have not commented on Bale’s appearance, but Blatter said if there was an official complaint to FIFA then the 23-year-old could be banned for playing again for Spurs – even in friendlies – until August 12.
Asked about Bale, Blatter said: “The principle is that if a club does not release a player then this association can come to FIFA and we will then ban this player during the duration of the Olympics ”
After making his comeback, Bale, pictured right, said his rehabilitation from a back injury was “well ahead of schedule”.
Bale came under fire on Twitter yesterday, with former Wales star Robbie Savage posting: “So A legend like [Ryan] giggs plays for the GB team, but bale who pulls out with injury scores for spurs last night , is that right ?
“Wales capt [Aaron] Ramsey, most decorated player giggs , prem league winner [Micah] Richards, does bale think he's better than that even if he is class !”
Former England captain Gary Lineker posted: “Gareth Bale who pulled out of the Olympics through injury played for Spurs last night. Once in a lifetime opportunity thrown away #baffled.”