Gareth Bale to Real Madrid; a transfer saga that was once so talked about that even your neighbour’s cat would have formed an opinion on whether the Welshman will go the Bernabeu or not. Yet here we are, smack bang in the middle of August and all looks very quiet on the Castillian front, perhaps a little too quiet one may hasten to add.
Whilst it seemed that Real Madrid executive Florentino Perez would have done/spent anything to land the 24 year old’s signature just a few weeks ago, it seems Carlo Ancelotti and his counterpart Zinedine Zidane have had second thoughts about bringing the highly coveted Welshman to Spain this summer. With Cristiano Ronaldo already on the Madrid roster, a player who is essentially a rich man’s Gareth Bale, it is easy to see why Los Galacticos have decided to go and spend their hard ‘earned’ money elsewhere.
With two players seemingly, so similar in physique, technique and style of play, does it really make sense for Real Madrid to spend more money on an inferior version of a player they already possess? (The Betfair online markets certainly hope it does). Not to mention that whilst Gareth Bale’s stock from an endorsement point of view has risen progressively over the years, being able to make back Gareth Bale’s transfer fee on shirt sales would be little more than a pipe dream for Real Madrid…although stranger things have happened.
Whilst most of us would give our left arm to be a fly on the wall inside Carlo Ancelotti’s office right now, it’s impossible to know with real certainty what goes on behind closed doors. Gary Neville raised an interesting point in a Q & A session following Manchester United’s community shield victory last Sunday.
With Bale only having one real stand out season since joining Spurs from Southampton as a youngster, Neville argued that truly great players need to have a proven record at the top level time and time again before commanding a high profile move. The sky sports pundit said;
“Gareth Bale’s only had one season where you could put him in the ‘top bracket’. The nine goals in 36 the year before, is a waste of time. To be worth £100 million you need to be scoring 20-25 goals every season.”
“If I was looking after him knowing his character and thinking about him I’d think ‘look just have another year, even if it’s at Tottenham just have another year and keep doing what you’re doing.”
As the days roll into weeks it seems more and more likely that Gareth Bale will take Neville’s advice but with rumours that Manchester United are joining the race to sign his signature, there could yet be a final twist in this summer’s stand out transfer saga.