Former Manchester United striker Terry Gibson says Gareth Bale faces a "massive year" at Real Madrid as his place in the first team comes under increasing pressure from younger talents.

Bale, 28, is under pressure to deliver after an injury-hit 2016/17 season in which he featured in just 19 La Liga games.

The former Tottenham forward missed several crucial fixtures in the final six weeks of Real's campaign with a calf injury, but returned to make a cameo in the club's Champions League final victory over Juventus in Cardiff.

He spent three months on the sidelines earlier on in the season due to an ankle injury.

Gibson said the emergence of the likes of Isco and Marco Asensio posed a threat to Bale's future at the Santiago Bernabeu, while there is also talk of Real pursuing a mega-money move for Monaco's teenage striker Kylian Mbappe.

"It is a massive year for Bale, I would say it is almost make or break for Bale at Real Madrid," Gibson told Sky Sports.

"These youngsters are breathing down his neck, Asensio in particular.

Gareth Bale
Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale (left) has been persistently linked with Manchester United Getty Images

"I am not going to doubt Bale, he has just been unlucky with injuries, but there is genuine competition for that place up front alongside Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo.

"The more you see of Asensio though, the more you think he is going to be a real world-class player – he is a world-class youngster at the moment, but I think he is going to develop into one of the best players in the world."

Bale has been persistently linked with a move to Manchester United, with Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho saying this week that he was ready to "fight" for the Welshman's signature.

Bale started and played 73 minutes of Real's 2-1 win over United in the Uefa Super Cup in Skopje on 8 August before being replaced by Asensio.