Spurs supporters – avert your eyes.
We may see some traction this week in the Gareth Bale saga as the winger’s representatives hope to meet Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy to discuss a potential move to Real Madrid.
Returning to London from Barclays Asia Trophy in Hong Kong, the club has been granted two days of down time before preparations begin for Saturday’s friendly in Monaco. It’s a match that, with Bale’s glute muscle issue and the growing murmurs of his discontent, the winger is unlikely to feature.
The source of Bale’s ire has been well publicized: Levy has refused to consider the $133 million (€100m) bid that Madrid has reportedly tabled for the 24 year old. From all indications, Spurs will remain resolute in their denial of selling Bale, world record fee or not.
The issue then becomes, how far is Bale willing to take his vexation?
He could try to force the issue by submitting a formal transfer request.
Doing so is a necessary step in the transfer process, a public declaration of the player’s unhappiness and intent to leave the club. The effect of such a move in this situation, however, is questionable as Levy would likely reject the request and Madrid chairman Florentino Pérez is already set to meet Levy in Miami early next month.
If a transfer request is submitted and denied, Bale’s taste for Madrid will really be tested as the next step in the guide to getting a transfer is typically to go AWOL. It’s a move that Luka Modric successfully employed last year when Levy stamped his feet in protest of the Croatian international’s proposed transfer to the Santiago Bernabéu.
Whether Bale, who has maintained a delightful relationship with the Tottenham higher-ups since moving to the club in 2007, is willing to leave under such hostile circumstances is a scenario that both sides will hope to avoid.