McManaman insists Bale cannot turn down Real Madrid move

Liverpool, Real Madrid and England legend Steve McManaman has insisted that Gareth Bale cannot say no to a potential move to Real Madrid should the opportunity arise, according to The Mirror.

McManaman left Anfield to join Real on a Bosman deal in 1999, and became a cult hero with the Spaniards, winning two European Cups and two La Liga titles following the switch, and feels that the time is just about right for the Welsh wizard to make a similar trade.

Bale has enjoyed a growing reputation in recent years, and is now often discussed in the same breath as the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in discussions about some of the world’s best players.

McManaman said: “If he ever has the opportunity to play for Real Madrid or Barcelona I would never say ‘no’ to them. I think sooner or later, whether it’s this year or next year, he needs to be playing against the best people in the world.

“He needs to be testing himself against the best players in the world because he is arguably one of the best players in the world on current form.”

Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas is trying to tempt Bale to commit his future to the club by getting him to sign yet another improved contract, just 12 months after his last extension. Real are known admirers, but Villas-Boas is keen to keep his prized asset in the hopes of helping Spurs finally reach the Champions League once again.

McManaman believes that Bale is likely to leave the club if they cannot deliver Champions League football within the next year – if they can keep him that long to start with.

He continued: “Sooner rather than later he’ll want to be playing in the Champions League and if Tottenham can’t ­deliver that this year I think they’re going to struggle to hold on to him. But it all depends on whether he’s comfortable in London, whether he wants to play abroad and whether he fancies the challenge abroad.

“He’s 23 at the moment, he’s still very young and he’s a new father – he has got time on his side. But it all depends on what he wants to do doesn’t it?”

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