Gareth Bale’s return to the Premier League has been a topic of discussion for quite a while now and it seems that we might finally be getting a conclusion to it soon.
Tottenham Hotspur, the Welshman’s former club, is reportedly in advanced talks to bring back Bale to North London which has thrown Spurs fans into a frenzy.
And while I do share their excitement about welcoming a great talent back to the Premier League, I have my doubts on whether this second Tottenham stint will work out for both the club and the player.
But before I get into that, let’s see what the latest developments are and whether it is realistic to expect this transfer to materialize.
How Close Is a Potential Deal?
Any deal involving a player who is currently enjoying a £600,000-per-week contract is complicated but there are a few things we know for certain.
Gareth Bale wants to leave Real Madrid and manager Zinedine Zidane doesn’t want him there either.
And while Bale can very well stay put until his contract runs out, his ambition to be as fit as possible for the upcoming Euros is a big motivation to finally move away from Santiago Bernabeu seeing how his playing time has gradually diminished over the last couple of seasons.
We’ve been here before and I can understand everyone’s skepticism after all the years of speculation of Bale going to Manchester United or China amounted to nothing.
However, I feel this time we might be looking at a real possibility for the Welshman to complete a move.
Bale seems set on a return to Tottenham where he is adored by the fans and will certainly be a leading figure in the squad.
In addition, Spurs have done a lot of business with Real Madrid in the past and the two clubs have a very good relationship.
This is bound to play a part and despite there are currently no concrete reports on a potential transfer fee, I’m sure Tottenham will go the extra mile to get their man even if it means throwing in a player or two in the other direction.
Will Gareth Bale Be a Success at Tottenham Again?
Since we’ve established that there’s definitely substance in the rumors, it’s time to look at what Gareth Bale can bring to the North London club during his second spell there.
I believe there aren’t a lot of people who would dispute the Welshman’s qualities on the football pitch and despite his current situation in Madrid, Bale has actually been quite successful in Spain.
He has won four Champions League trophies, two La Liga titles, and has scored over 100 goals for the club.
Even at 31, the Welshman is bound to bring back a bit of that magic if he does return to Tottenham but there are a few things that give me pause.
First of all, expectations from the media and the fans will be huge.
This will certainly create a lot of pressure and given how little playing time Bale has been given in the last year, I fail to see how he will be able to build up a rhythm that would allow him to be a productive member of the squad right off the bat.
Another troubling issue is the player’s injury record.
The Welshman has had a ton of health problems in Madrid and at 31-years-old, the rigors of the Premier League may prove too much for him.
I believe he will get along with manager Jose Mourinho well at least at the start, as he has expressed his admiration for Mou’s coaching methods publicly in the past.
However, the Portuguese specialist is under a lot of pressure himself and the atmosphere at the club is not exactly rosy at the moment.
Mourinho will not hesitate to drop Bale if he consistently underperforms and given how the player’s main motivation to leave Madrid is to get match fit for the Euros, their relationship may quickly turn sour.
All in all, I do feel that Bale will bring a bit of spark to this Tottenham side, however, investing so much in such a short-term solution is quite risky for Spurs, especially with the current situation within the club and Bale’s poor physical form.
We’re going to have to wait and see, but as it stands, I feel this has a better chance of turning into a very costly mistake rather than a brilliant piece of business for Tottenham.