REAL MADRID vs TOTTENHAM
SPURS manager Harry Redknapp insists it would take a world record transfer fee to prise Gareth Bale from White Hart Lane after the Wales winger intimated yesterday that he could be tempted by a move abroad in the future.
Bale has been passed fit to play against one of his chief suitors, Real Madrid, in tonight’s box office Champions League first leg quarter-final at the Bernabeu.
Redknapp, however, is refusing to entertain the idea of cashing in on the 21-year-old, who has recovered from a hamstring strain, having worked so hard to build a squad capable of competing for major European honours.
Redknapp said: “Once you start selling one, it sends out the wrong signals. Manchester United sold Ronaldo but they got an offer of £80m so in the end it was good business. But we wouldn’t want to sell a player like Gareth Bale at this time, when we’re trying to build the club.
“It would have to be that type of figure. It would be an amazing figure if you ever sold him. But how do you replace a player like that?”
Bale, who signed a new contract until 2015 last month, hinted at a possible move abroad in an interview given to a Spanish newspaper.
He said: “You never know. I’m not afraid to leave the country and if a serious offer comes in you need to seriously consider it.
“If I leave the Premier League I’ll learn another language and I’ll grow as a person. There aren’t more British players abroad because the Premier League is very strong. But La Liga has Ronaldo and Messi.”
Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho, however, was keen to play down a potential big money raid in the summer.
He said: “Tottenham buy well but they like to sell very, very well. So I think the amount of money to buy Bale is not very easy. We already have players for that position with Ronaldo and Marcelo.”
As well as Bale, Tottenham are likely to be boosted tonight by the return of defender William Gallas.