It’s been clear for some time that Gareth Bale isn’t happy at Real Madrid and they probably don’t want him either, so something has to give soon.
Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has been quoted by Marca as saying that he’s been left out of the Champions League squad to face Man City because he decided he didn’t want to play, so this has to be the final straw.
It was always going to be tough for him to get a move due to his wages, while the current global situation will only make that worse.
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Perhaps he’s just trying to irritate Real Madrid to the point that they just take the financial hit and let him go for free while paying some of his wages.
He can’t have that many options for his next transfer, but here’s a look at three that could make sense.
MLS – specifically Inter Miami
MLS has always been a destination for great European players who are looking for a final payday, while Inter Miami are a new franchise who need a huge name to give them some legitimacy.
They are also owned by David Beckham – a man who knows what it’s like to move to MLS after being hounded out of the Bernabeu, so that experience could help Bale settle and thrive too.
He would be far too good for the league but that means he should be fresh for Wales duty, and he would instantly be the megastar in that market which should appeal to him too.
This would be dependent on Real letting him go for a low price, but Juve are the kings of the free transfer and a lot of great players have enjoyed a late rejuvenation in Turin.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Andrea Pirlo are the main examples, but there is also a need in this team as the attack will need to be freshened up soon.
Ronaldo is getting older and might need to rest, Gonzalo Higuain might be past his best and the other wide options in the team aren’t good enough to make the difference on the highest stage.
There would always be the fear that he would be stepping back into Ronaldo’s shadow, but Juve are desperate to win the Champions League and he has experience of that too.
It’s always been clear that Bale plays his best football when he feels like things are built around him, and a return to Spurs could allow him to feel like that again.
The presence of Jose Mourinho could make this tricky, but he will also be desperate to improve his team, and the Real Madrid history is a factor too.
You can be sure that Mourinho is very bitter about the way that things ended in Madrid, so if he could get the best out of someone who they forced out, then it will give him a reason to feel very smug indeed.
The wages will always be an issue here, but Bale is doing his best to make Real snap so they might be prepared to eat some of his contract just to get rid of him at this point.