Real Madrid are reportedly weighing up whether to sell Gareth Bale, with president Florentino Perez doubting he can take over from Cristiano Ronaldo as the club’s star player. It has prompted speculation he could be signed by Manchester United.
Journalist Eduardo Inda told El Chiringuito (h/t the Daily Express): “The club is considering the possibility of selling a player, and there are serious doubts with [Karim] Benzema and Bale about the issue of their injuries. I think it will continue next season, but if it continues this way, it will be sold next summer.”
Otway added United “front-runners” to sign him if he does depart next year.
Inda is the founder of Spanish outlet OK Diario, which Barcelona star Gerard Pique has accused of being a “puppet publication” for Perez, via Marca.
Bale has spent a significant portion of this season struggling for fitness, and as SB Nation’s Lucas Navarrete illustrated, he has been dealing with injury problems throughout his time in the Spanish capital:
Bale has missed 59 matches since he signed for Real Madrid 4 years ago. Should Los Blancos give up on him this summer?
— Lucas Navarrete (@LucasNavarreteM) April 25, 2017
The Wales international has racked up 67 goals and 51 assists in 149 appearances for Los Blancos, including nine and five, respectively, in 26 outings this year.
After a slightly difficult period at the start of his Madrid career, Bale looked to have settled and was producing some world-class performances, but there is now a question mark over his suitability to the team once again, not helped by his injury troubles.
Nevertheless, he would make for an outstanding signing for United.
With his pace, power and all-round excellent forward play, Bale has all the attributes to shine in the Premier League and showed as much for Tottenham Hotspur before he left for Real Madrid in 2013 for a reported fee of £85m:
A last-minute @GarethBale11 🚀 settled it in 2013…
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 3, 2017
It seems Bale will be given another year to prove his form and fitness at the Santiago Bernabeu, but even if he’s unable to convince Perez, he would still make a strong acquisition for United.
Equally, with the Red Devils in need of attacking reinforcements sooner rather than later, they could seek to capitalise on any doubts held by Madrid to tempt them into parting with him this summer.