GARETH Bale is expected to report for training in Newport tomorrow but is understood to be reluctant to risk his fitness by playing for Wales against the Republic of Ireland on Wednesday while his future remains in the balance.

Talks between Tottenham and Real Madrid over his career are due to resume later this week.

His transfer is still expected to go through before the window closes and could even be concluded by next weekend.

Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas claimed on Saturday night that Bale will not even be fit for the season opener against Crystal Palace on Sunday owing to his foot injury.

But he has been told to join up with Chris Coleman’s Wales squad, who train at Dragon Park, the new Football Association of Wales national development centre, in Newport tomorrow afternoon.

“He is far, far away from fitness because of this,” the Spurs manager said.

Bale is thought to have a very minor foot injury that would not usually prevent him from playing in a key match.

If Wales examine Bale and conclude that he is fit to play on Wednesday, it will create an intriguing conflict with Tottenham’s – and apparently the player’s – determination to stay out of action.

“Gareth has been instructed to report for international duty,” said Andre Villas-Boas.

“He has been training alone and working with our medical department, and we will make sure they pass all the relevant information across to the Wales team.

“Will he play for Wales? That’s not up to me.”

An FAW spokeman confirmed that Bale is expected to arrive in Newport with the rest of the squad today.

Coleman may decide to tread a diplomatic path and pull Bale out of the friendly to avoid causing the star any embarrassment.

But no-one foresees him turning out for Spurs in the near future. Spurs fans did not chant Bale’s name or parade banners pleading with him to stay as Tottenham drew 1-1 with Espanyol on Saturday.