Gareth Bale has been urged to ignore Premier League advances this summer as he closes in on a sensational Tottenham return. Speaking ahead of his potential return to English football, Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder has joked the Welshman should instead stay in Madrid playing golf.
After winning four Champions Leagues with Real Madrid, Bale’s La Liga stay looks set to come to an end in the current window.
The 31-year-old’s relationship with Real boss Zinedine Zidane has damaged beyond repair, with the winger barely kicking a ball in anger in recent months.
Manchester United had been linked with a move for Bale, but it is understood that first team assurances made by Spurs means he is close to returning to his old club.
Bale left north London for Madrid back in 2013, for a fee in the region of £85million. But with the Spanish giants desperate to get his wages off the bill, he will be signed on a one-year loan deal, with his parent club paying half of his salary.
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The winger’s agent confirmed that Spurs was his preferred move, although the deal still had details to be ironed out.
Speaking to BBC Sport Wales said: “Gareth still loves Spurs. We are talking, Spurs, Real Madrid, and the player’s camp. It is where he wants to be.”
“It is close but not done. It is a complicated deal.”
But Wilder – whose Blades side will need to face the two-time PFA Player of the Season this campaign – has insisted he should stay in the Madrid, rather than come back to Engalnd’s top-flight.
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In his pre-match press conference, Wilder said: “I said it when we came into the Premier League and there was talk about Eden Hazard going to Real Madrid… I said I’d give him a taxi to the airport!
“Hopefully Gareth stays in Madrid, it’s a lovely place and there are some lovely golf courses… don’t make it any harder for us!
“I’m not surprised he wants to come and play in the Premier League.
“We’ve had some great experiences and a lot of Spurs fans will want it to happen.
“I can’t imagine there are many Sheffield United fans hoping that happens, though, because it just gives us another challenge!”
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Meanwhile, Spurs boss Jose Mourinho remains coy on the potential deal for Bale, with fans desperate to see him back at White Hart Lane.
“I’m not going to comment on Gareth Bale – a Real Madrid player,” Mourinho said.
“I tried to sign him for Real Madrid which was not possible during my time there.
“But the president followed my instinct and followed my knowledge and the season I left he brought Gareth to the club.”
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