Manchester United have not made a move for Gareth Bale.
The Wales international has emerged as one of the top talents in European football, due to a string of sensational performances for Tottenham Hotspur. As much as the Londoners still hope to retain the 24-year-old as they push for a top-four finish in the Premier League, it looks increasingly likely that he will soon depart the capital.
Real Madrid have long been favourites to sign Bale, who was in the Spanish capital last week in the hope of finally sealing a proposed £86million move to the Bernabeu. However, this world-record transfer has since stalled, and he is now back in England although reports on Tuesday claim he has not linked up with his Spurs pals for training.
On Monday, the White Hart Lane club claimed they were now considering a rival bid for the forward, and rumours soon spread that this had come from the direction of Old Trafford. David Moyes has endured a difficult first summer as Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor, with a number of top targets such as Cesc Fabregas proving unattainable.
Whilst landing Bale would likely treble the £30.1million fee they paid Tottenham for Dimitar Berbatov, it would certainly be a statement of intent at what is a transitional time for the Reds. However, Moyes has denied making an offer for the former Southampton youngster, although he remains determined to add to his squad before the window shuts.
“I said at the start that Manchester United will always be interested in the best players and we’ll always be looking to try and improve the team,” he told Sky Sports. “The owners have given me every opportunity to get who I want so we’ll continue to look for those players. It’s been tough in this window but we’re always looking at the best players.”
It remains possible that the mystery bidders for Bale don’t actually exist. Tottenham, if they are to lose the player, would naturally want to receive the windfall so they can add to their squad, and it may well be that their latest statement is merely to force the issue with Real, who have already started advertising Bale shirts on their website.
Moyes, meanwhile, is expected to make an improved bid for Marouane Fellaini in the coming days. Everton last week rejected a double offer of £28million for Leighton Baines and the Belgian international, but the former Goodison Park boss is being tipped to return with a bid of around £20million for the latter ahead of the trip to Liverpool on Sunday.