Underwhelming developments in everyone's favourite summer time transfer saga with some subdued words from Madrid presidente, Florentino Pérez.
In a nutshell, housewives favourite Pérez has informed us:
- Madrid are talking with a lot of people
- 'Let's see what happens with ALL our negotiations' - that includes Bale and others
- 'We don't talk about him out of respect of the player, the club and the chairman with who we have a good friendship with after we signed Modric'
- 'If I don't talk about names, I don't take about money. For me 100M€ is too much for anything/anyone'
It's again, all very diplomatic, far detached from the frantic madness of the media.
Not exactly oozing confidence and bullish belief is he?
As for playing the peace keeper, let's not pretend that almost every first team player along with Zidane have piped up about Bale this summer. So, does any of this mean anything? It shouldn't. It's best ignored, if anything because, most will take this at face value and see it as a retreat. It might well be. But considering how dismissive we've been of so much of the hyperbole this summer, again, being selective with what we choose to believe and disbelieve is a dangerous game. Well, only if you care about avoiding a broken heart.
This is stalemate. And as I've alluded to several times, this is a forced stalemate but not one that will result with a low key ending. Unless Madrid sign Luis Suarez.
Madrid won't pay £100M (is it Sterling or Euros?). Which means that's the asking price. Which means Spurs are rejecting (in principle or otherwise) any other suggested bid for anything below that price. If Madrid offer or have offered £80M / £85M - then that, for now, is them locked onto the hope this deal will still happen. How? Simply but, the one person that has retained solidarity and not spoken, could prove to the catalyst. If he speaks up in support of a move, then Madrid will seek to pressure Spurs into selling at the 'cut price' fee (What's £15M between friends anyway?). But this still doesn't fit into Levy logic.
If £85M isn't enough, if £100M is the asking price, then much like Luka Modric, Bale will have no option but to play out another season. Unless he drops a transfer request bomb. But even then, how does the club justify the £85M when £100M has been the magic number all summer long? What's the point of standing strong only to surrender with weakness? If Spurs are actually content with £85M, then I can only imagine that the reason they've rejected that bid is to wait it out and see if Bale will actually attempt to engineer the move by asking to leave. Personally, that goes against the impression he has given in his time at Spurs. I know we like to spit out soundbites about how disloyal all footballers are, but Bale strikes me as someone that would prefer to avoid any tarnishing of his Spurs legacy.
(worth noting that Madrid have probably bid 100M Euros which is 86M Sterling, therefore meaning we want 100M Sterling which is around 120M Euros)
Madrid, for all their 'good relationship' citations, appear to have taken patronising to the next level.
Will Bale be that deciding catalyst that Pérez appears to be relying on, to push this out of stalemate in this game of footballing chess? Has Levy already knocked over the board and walked away? Does this analogy require Alan Patridge? Who are the bishops?
Is this game over?
I doubt it.
It's interesting that Spurs haven't taken the decision to draw a line under it. Maybe not so much so because if Madrid bid £100M I can't envisage them rejecting it so perhaps it's not best practice to end this saga just yet from a business point of view. It's win win for Spurs. It's win lose for Madrid and for Bale it's...I don't know. I'm waiting for him to let me know.
If Madrid have privately told Spurs there is no chance of paying up that amount, then close the shop. Pull the shutters up. Tell them we'll re-open for business next summer. As long as their cheque doesn't bounce.