"Hazard's injury is bad luck for us, but it has not changed the idea we had for Bale in this game".
If Real Madrid want to achieve great results this season, both will be important because they have the quality needed.
"Gareth, James, Everyone here is going to defend the shirt the way it deserves to be." added the Frenchman.
"We played very well in the first half then, in the second, we fought hard together with a man down".
Despite their numerical disadvantage, Madrid wrapped up all three points thanks to Toni Kroos and Lucas Vazquez, while Iker Losada netted a stoppage-time consolation.
Real goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois also praised Bale's performance and credited his side for making such a strong start to the campaign after a worrying run of results in pre-season, which began with three defeats in four matches.
"I always meant to start him today, regardless of the injury to Eden Hazard". But before Celta could think about taking advantage, Tony Kroos made it 2-0 with a long range shot which went in off the underside of the bar. So we put in another player.
"You have to focus on the season, nothing more". While Benzema is a certain starter, his partner could be one of Luka Jovic, Vinicius Junior and surprisingly Gareth Bale, who Zidane was quizzed about as well.
Bale was back in the team and back in form at Balaidos, with Zidane's eagerness to sell him this summer perhaps fresh in his mind as he teed up Karim Benzema's opening goal. "Gareth played an outstanding game", he said.
"We are so happy with Bale". In preseason we just played in snatches, today we were good all game.
The next LaLiga Santander fixture for Real Madrid is at home against Real Valladolid, while Barcelona welcome Real Betis to the Camp Nou.
However, it would appear that these rules have not been effectively communicated to Spanish football fans - many of whom took to Twitter to express their feelings that the referee acted harshly in sending the playmaker off.
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