Tottenham are reported to be ‘growing in confidence’ that they can complete a deal for Gareth Bale on transfer deadline day – but Zinedine Zidane is adamant the 30-year-old remains part of his plans.
The north Londoners have regularly been linked with a move for their former player and his potential arrival would represent a marquee signing for Jose Mourinho as he looks to reignite the club’s pursuit of a top-four finish.
Is Bale heading for a Spurs return? Five things to know…
- Bale joined Real Madrid from Tottenham in 2013 for a world record fee of £85m.
- He has won the Champions League four times since joining the club.
- The 30-year-old has been out of favour at the Bernabeu in recent months, making just 12 appearances in La Liga this season.
- The Spurs hierarchy believe they made a breakthrough in negotiations on Thursday night, according to the Times.
- However, Zinedine Zidane has today stated that he wants the Welshman to stay put.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy reportedly travelled to Madrid earlier this week for talks with Los Blancos president Florentino Perez, with Bale’s huge wages on the agenda.
Bale is known to be an admirer of Mourinho and claimed that Spurs had made an important statement of intent when they appointed the former Man United, Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss earleir this season.
“Having [Jose] Mourinho there is an amazing statement from the club, I think he’s a serial winner,” he told BT Sport in December.
“Tottenham want to win trophies and I don’t think there’s a better partnership than Mourinho and Tottenham together to try and win some trophies.”
Bale’s relationship with Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has been far from amicable in the past and he came close joining a Chinese Super League club last summer.
Zinedine Zidane on Gareth Bale on potentially leaving the club: "Gareth is here with us and I am counting on him. I am not contemplating this possibility." pic.twitter.com/UKE1zUkBBN
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) January 31, 2020
However, talks broke down and – speaking ahead of this weekend’s Madrid derby – Zidane has now insisted that Bale is firmly part of his plans.
“Gareth is here with us and I am counting on him. I am not contemplating this possibility,” said the Frenchman.
Spurs have already boosted their attacking options during the January transfer window with the signing of Netherlands international Steven Bergwijn, but Mourinho is still short up front.
The north Londoners have struggled to retain a foothold in the race for a top-four berth following an injury to Harry Kane and a host of forwards have been linked with a move to N17 – although none of them have been as high profile as Bale.