“You made me a promise. You promised me if we didn’t qualify for the Champions League and a good offer turned up you’d listen to it. Well that offer has arrived and I want to play for Real Madrid. So keep your word and negotiate”. Daniel Levy, who is famed for being a hard business man, discovered the hard way that 24 year-old Gareth Bale doesn’t beat about the bush. Accustomed as he is to tough meetings, the one Levy had with the player last Wednesday in London was a real eye opener.
Bale was just as direct in his approach to the Chairman as he is when he plays on the pitch of White Hart Lane. The Welsh forward left little room for doubt: “I’m not interested in Manchester United or any other club. I only want to play for Real Madrid.” Bale is under contract at Spurs until 2016 but his agent, Jonathan Barnett, struck up a deal with Florentino Pérez and José Angel Sánchez in a meeting held in Madrid on 25th June. Should the deal be accepted, Bale will spend the next six seasons at the Santiago Bernabéu, where he stands to earn between €9 and 10 million.
The clock is ticking and although there has been no official response to Real Madrid’s initial offer as yet, which amounts to just over €60 million, at Tottenham an air of resignation is seeping in as they are beginning to accept the inevitable. It is clear that where Bale would really rather be next week, rather than in Hong Kong, is in LA…and dressed in white.