Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has dismissed any suggestion that Gareth Bale has been turned into a scapegoat at the Santiago Bernabéu.
The Wales international was deemed surplus to requirements at Real Madrid and was even on the brink of moving to China, but ultimately Bale was forced to stay in the Spanish capital - seemingly against Zidane's wishes - for at least another half-season.
Bale has since claimed that he feels he's been made a scapegoat at Real Madrid, but Zidane rejected any suggestion that the 30-year-old forward is solely being blamed for the club's problems this season.
"No, I think we're all guilty if things go wrong or if things go right," Zidane said, quoted by Goal. "It's up to us, all of us, we're all in the same boat. We want to change things when things don't go right. We're thinking as a team mentality.
I've always said he's got amazing quality, Gareth Bale. He's a great player. What happened in the summer, everyone knew the situation. Now he's here, I'm happy, he's happy, everyone is happy, the fans as well.
"Now we have to move forward."
Although Bale was seemingly being pushed out of the exit door at Real Madrid during the summer, his form in the early stages of the season could be a reason why Zidane and co are now backtracking on their stance over his future just last month.
The Welshman has scored two goals and picked up an assist in Real Madrid's opening three matches in La Liga, although the club are still sitting four points off the top of the table with just one win to their name so far.