Monday 19 August 2019

Gareth Bale's agent hits out at Zinedine Zidane in transfer web that could impact Paul Pogba's Man United future

Gareth Bale. REUTERS/Sergio Perez
Gareth Bale. REUTERS/Sergio Perez
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Gareth Bale's agent Jonathan Barnett has launched a stinging attack on Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane, as a transfer web that appears to be linked to Paul Pogba's future at Manchester United escalated in rapid fashion.

Bale's future at Real Madrid has been under a cloud since Zidane returned for a second spell as head coach earlier this year, with the Frenchman quickly confirming the 30-year-old will not be in his plans for the upcoming season.

"We hope he leaves soon," Zidane told the media on Sunday. "It would be best for everyone. We are working on his transfer to a new team.

"I have nothing personal against him, but there comes a time where things are done because they must be done. I have to make decisions. We have to change. The exit is the coach's decision, and also of the player, who knows the situation.

"The situation will change, I do not know if in 24 or 48 hours, but it will - and it's a good thing for everyone."

Those comments have infuriated Bale's adviser Barnett, after his public comments that his client has no intention of leaving Real Madrid in this transfer window were undermined by Zidane's declaration that the player needs to leave now.

"Zidane is a disgrace to speak like that about someone who has done so much for Real," Barnett told ESPN. "If and when Gareth goes it will be because it is in the best interest of Gareth and nothing to do with Zidane pushing."

Tottenham have a first option to buy back the player they sold to Real Madrid for what was then a world-record fee of £86m in the summer of 2013, but there are question marks over whether the north London club could fund Bale's wages despite their eagerness to complete a deal.

Another option for Bale could be a move to Manchester United, but Old Trafford sources have consistently stated in recent months that Bale is not a player on manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's wanted list, as he targets younger talent in this transfer window.

Zindane's comments leave Bale in a difficult position, as it is clear he will not play for Real Madrid so long as the curer coaching team are in place, with a sizeable play-off to the Welshman for the final three years of his contract a possible solution to a story that could have a domino effect in this transfer window.

While United have insisted they will not sell Pogba in this transfer window, an offer in excess of £150m would tempt the Old Trafford club to sell a player who has made it clear that he wants to link up with Zidane at Real Madrid.

So if Bale is forced out in the next couple of weeks, the void on the Real Madrid wage bill could be filled by Pogba in a transfer story that could explode into life in the next few days.

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