Andre Villas-Boas claims he has been told Gareth Bale will stay at Tottenham Hotspur if they qualify for the UEFA Champions League this season.
The Londoners finished fourth in the Premier League last season, but were denied entry to the number one club tournament in Europe as Chelsea, who finished in sixth place, were allowed to defend the trophy they won in Munich. This contributed to the controversial decision to sack Harry Redknapp, who was then replaced by Villas-Boas.
Despite his perceived failure at Stamford Bridge, the Portuguese coach has this season restored the reputation he earned at Porto. Tottenham are currently fifth in the standings, and are fighting capital rivals Arsenal and his former club for third and fourth spot.
Much of Spurs’ success this term has been down to Bale, who has enjoyed yet another sensational campaign. The Wales international, who is a contender for PFA Player of the Year and PFA Young Player of the Year, has been given more freedom on the pitch by his current boss, and he has responded with 23 goals and 14 assists in 39 outings.
A number of clubs, including Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and the two Manchester sides, have been linked with the 23-year-old, who is valued in the region of £80million by his current employers. However, Villas-Boas has revealed that he has been told a top-four finish would guarantee the forward will remain at White Hart Lane.
“That’s the information that I have from the club,” he said. “The club is committed to keeping the best assets. That’s the only way that we can ensure that we are in the top four every year. Gareth is part of that project bearing in mind that he has been amazing this season. Hopefully we can develop him to a greater extent.”
Even if Tottenham were to fall short, they would still hold all the aces in regards to their best player. Bale still has three years remaining on his contract, and with the progress the team are clearly making on the pitch, there is no reason why they should consider letting him go even if he declares he wants to leave for pastures new.