Talks have broken down between Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur over the potential transfer of Gareth Bale, with Madrid president Florentino Perez questioning the player’s worth as Spurs hold out for the best possible deal.
Perez signalled a cooling of the club’s interest in the PFA and Football Writers’ Association player of the year and cast doubt over whether Los Blancos will make the north Londoners a bid in excess of the £80m they shelled out to Manchester United for Cristiano Ronaldo in 2008.
Tottenham – who are 17/10 for a top four finish this season – believe Madrid are trying to drive down Bale’s price, but Daniel Levy showed throughout Luka Modric’s protracted move to the Bernabeu that his club won’t be pushed around in the transfer market.
Levy rejected Chelsea’s £40m bid for midfielder Modric at the end of the 2011 summer transfer window, opting instead to keep the Croatian at the club for an extra year before selling him to Madrid the following summer for £33m.
Spurs will be wary of the La Liga club’s willingness to let the saga run into the last weeks of the window hoping Bale can force through a move, but with Levy happy to keep his prize asset at the club, Perez will have to come up with the right offer if the former Southampton youth player is to step out in the white of Real Madrid next season.
Levy rejected Perez’s request to spread Bale’s fee over a six-year period and wants cash up front or at least two players from Real’s first-team squad, with 20-year-old winger Jese Rodriguez joining Alvaro Morato, Angel Di Maria and Fabio Coentrao as the latest name to be linked to the deal.