• Premier League

Modric lined up as part of Bale deal

ESPN staff
July 31, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Gareth Bale could become the most expensive player in the world if he moves to Real Madrid © Getty Images
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Tottenham Hotspur will agree to sell Gareth Bale to Real Madrid as long as they get Luka Modric back as part of the deal, according to widespread reports in Tuesday's newspapers.

There seems to be an acceptance that Real will get Bale at some point with the only remaining issue being what the overall deal involves. Real have so far offered £80 million while Tottenham are looking for a package nearer £100 million.

Tottenham are keen that they are not caught short by losing Bale, even for a huge sum, without them having a top player to fill the void. Although Modric left White Hart Lane under something of a cloud a year ago for £28 million, reports suggest some of that fee is still outstanding and a guarantee of first-team football might cause him to mellow.

If Modric does go to Spurs then it will leave Manchester United contemplating another of their targets to have gone elsewhere. Yesterday it was reported they were preparing to launch a £25 million bid for Modric in the light of their other transfer options drying up.

Meanwhile, Spanish Football League president Javier Tebas insists there is nothing "immoral" about the sums involved in the chase for Bale.

With the amount usurping Cristiano Ronaldo's move to the Bernabeu four years ago as the most lucrative in football history, questions have been raised over the validity of Real's move.

Spurs or Real Madrid for Bale?

Spurs may be prepared to let Gareth Bale leave © Getty Images
  • Gabriele Marcotti takes a look at the situation both Tottenham and Gareth Bale find themselves in as Real Madrid continue to make plenty of noise
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But Tebas believes Real will not be crossing any legal boundaries provided they have the sufficient funds to recruit Bale.

"It is immoral to pay for something when you cannot afford it," Tebas said. "I think it's more immoral for a club to spend €1 million which they do not have. €100 million is a huge amount of money to spend on a player but if Madrid can afford that then it's not a question of morality, but of whether it's a risky move or not."

Tebas suggested Bale's move to Madrid could help raise the profile of La Liga after a summer of high profile player departures, including the exits of Radamel Falcao, Alvaro Negredo and Jesus Navas.

"I don't know much about him, but if Bale is a good player, then I'd rather he was over her [in La Liga] than in the Premier League," he added. "It's not a question of how much he costs, you have to look at how much money he will generate, and if the LFP has all the stars, it will allow us to maintain high television revenue. All the money the arrival of this type of player generates translates into more revenue.

"Seeing players leave [Spain] is a double-edged sword. Clubs need to decrease their debts, and it's a shame that players have to leave, but it is good news because this is the path we have chosen.

"Spanish football clubs pay €120 million in interest each season, and just think about the players we could have had with that money and how much we could have paid them. If we can reduce our debts, in four or five seasons' time we will have more money to invest in our football. We are on the right track, and the clubs know that."

Meanwhile, Real defender Sergio Ramos remained coy on the prospect of having Bale as his team-mate this season.

"I think that the price of the player is dictated by the market," he said. "It's not my job to decide whether we should sign Bale or someone else. It's important for Madrid to have a large number of young players and Spanish players in the team.

"The mix of youth and experience makes for a good project. The president and the other directors will decide whether or not we sign Bale, not me."

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