Gareth Bale, a footballing legend for Wales, announced his retirement from the sport in a heartfelt letter on social media.

The former Real Madrid player has ended his brilliant career, which included victories in three La Ligas, five Champions Leagues, and three Club World Cups. On Monday afternoon, the 33-year-old posted a heartfelt letter on social media to say goodbye to the supporters.

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Here’s all you need to know about Gareth Bale’s family: 

Parents Frank Bale, Debbi Bale and sister Vicky Bale

Bale was born in Cardiff, Wales, to school caretaker Frank Bale and operations manager Debbie Bale. Bale also has a sister Vicky Bale

Uncle Chris Pike

He is the nephew of Chris Pike, a former Cardiff City footballer.

Pike is a former professional footballer from Wales. Fulham, Cardiff City, and Gillingham were among his clubs. He appeared in over 250 Football League games.

He went to Whitchurch’s Eglwys Newydd Primary School. At the age of nine, he caught the attention of Southampton while playing in a six-a-side tournament with his first club, Cardiff Civil Service. Growing up, his football hero was fellow Welshman and Manchester United player Ryan Giggs.

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Wife Emma Rhys-Jones

Emma Rhys-Jones married Gareth Bale in 2019, the two have been together for more than a decade.

Rhys-Jones grew up in Llanishen, a district in north Cardiff a few miles from Bale’s family home.

While attending Whitchurch High School, the couple began dating in the early 2000s.

Gareth announced their engagement on social media in July 2016: “She said yes!! This is a birthday weekend I’ll never forget…”

The couple married in 2019.

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Gareth Bale children Alba Violet, Nava Valentina, Axel and Xander

Gareth and Rhys-Jones have four children, two sons and two daughters.

Alba Violet, their first child, was born at the University Hospital of Wales on October 21, 2012. 

Nava Valentina, their second child, was born on March 22, 2016.

Axel, the couple’s son, was born on May 8, 2018, and Xander, their fourth child, was born on July 7, 2021.