Manchester United have completed a £31million move for Villarreal defender Eric Bailly and now are setting their sights on another La Liga ace, but this target is a little more expensive.
El Confidencial, who are normally quite a reliable source say that Jose Mourinho has been given a €250million budget to spend at United. He has already spent €40million of that on Eric Bailly, and now he wants to spend €120million more on Gareth Bale, according to the Spanish news outlet.
They say Mourinho believes Bale wants to return to England and playing for Manchester United, he believes the Welshman can be tempted. If this did happen, there is unlikely to be much movement until after Euro 2016, with Bale currently fully focussed on succeeding with Wales in the tournament.
The report goes on to say that Madrid are interested in signing Paul Pogba this summer for exactly the same amount, €120million.
Manchester United are long time admirers of Bale, whilst Mourinho has also been a fan. There has always been a feeling that if Bale did one day return to England it would be to play for Manchester United. The English clubs lack of Champions League football may make a transfer more difficult at this stage. At first glance it seems very unlikely that Real Madrid would sell, but with Cristiano Ronaldo’s recent contract renewal and a move for Pogba on the horizon, it becomes more plausible that Madrid could accept such a huge bid from United.
Bale managed an incredible 19 goals and 10 assists in just 23 La Liga games this season. Like Cristiano, he has really flourished in Madrid and developed into the world class player he showed the potential to be when playing for Tottenham. Aged 26, he is the perfect age for United to make such a large investment for. He has the maturity and experience to perform consistently and at the highest level, whilst also having time on his side to continue to develop into an even better player and play his best years in Manchester.
Bale has mainly played on the right wing for Madrid, a position that enables him to cut inside onto his stronger left-foot. He is very versatile though and can also play behind the striker or on the left wing – he even played two league games as a striker last season.
Despite his great form, Bale has still been harshly judged on some poorer performances from Madrid, with fans on occasions booing the winger. Although he has previously shrugged off the boos, they must have some psychological effect and may play a part in him deciding to move back to England.
If Mourinho can assemble an attack made up of Bale, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Anthony Martial, the club would surely have an attacking trio that is up there with the best in Europe. For now, this move still appears overly ambitious, but the reports from Spain will be encouraging for United fans who are hoping for world class signings to arrive under Mourinho this summer.