The future of PFA Player of the Year Gareth Bale is shrouded in doubt and speculation this summer but could Tottenham actually be much better off without their star player?
Whilst Tottenham – the club, manager and the fans – are desperate to hang on to their star man, it is possible that the future could be brighter for the North Londoners without the young Welshman, as odd as that may sound/
Bale has been the star of the show at White Hart Lane this season, netting an incredible 26 goals in all competitions for Spurs. Subsequently, Bale has attracted a number of powerful and affluent suitors, the likes of Real Madrid, Manchester City and Manchester United who would happily pay whatever it takes to secure Bale’s services this summer.
Manager Andre Villas-Boas has outlined, along with Daniel Levy, the club’s intention is to offer the 23-year-old a new contract understood to be worth £150,000 a week, smashing the club’s current wage structure.
However, after speaking with a friend of mine – a lifelong Spurs fan – this week about the pros and cons of Bale staying or going, I’m convinced Tottenham could actually be improved as a team and a club if they sold their star player.
It’ll likely be a theory unpopular at present but consider the potential value of his transfer – likely set around £60 million, maybe more. If a bidding war ensues between the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester United and Manchester City, Tottenham could very well pocket £80 million for a 23-year-old they paid just £7 million for 6 years ago. There is even talk Madrid would offer four players in exchange.
Spending £150,000 a week on his wages is going to dramatically affect the kind of signings Spurs can make this summer – currently Bale earns £75,000 a week. His potential weekly wages next season would be enough to pay three new signings, never mind the cash generated from the transfer fee.
Spurs could also add-on extras to the deal, I would imagine, such as sell-on profit percentages, performance-based clauses, and the right to first refusal should whoever buys him not want him a few years down the line.
The deal could generate enough to effectively replenish the first-team squad with between five and ten quality players. Part of the problem, of course, even the paradox, is that without Bale, Spurs’ squad is not good enough to genuinely compete for a Champions League place next term, never mind the title.
Since the departures of Luka Modric and Rafael van der Vaart they haven’t packed quite the same punch. However, signings Clint Dempsey, Moussa Dembele, Gylfi Sigurdsson, and Lewis Holtby will likely play a much more integral part of their campaign next season, along with Jan Vertonghen who has been one of their best players this term.
They can expect Sandro and Younes Kaboul to return from injury along with improvement in youngsters Kyle Naughton, Kyle Walker, and Jake Livermore.
What Spurs really need is to become a team of stars, rather then be so desperately reliant on Gareth Bale – even if he stays, an injury to him renders Spurs so depleted in terms of quality and leadership, it really is a dangerous situation for the manager.
Tottenham have some quality players already – what they need is a world-class striker. If they sell Bale, they could bring in Leandro Damiao and Son Heung-Min and Christian Benteke or David Villa and Gonzalo Higuain.
They could have Joao Moutinho and Christian Erikssen – the point is, at the moment Spurs have one solitary world-class player in Gareth Bale but for the money he’s worth they could have a team of genuine title-challenging quality and end their over-reliance on one man.
Imagine a midfield consisting of Sandro, Moutinho, Holtby, Lennon, and Erikssen or a strike partnership of Damiao and Higuain. The possibilities are endless if Tottenham sell Bale and reinvest in the team. After all, they could keep Bale and he could pick up an injury and then where will they be? Up some creek without a paddle is where.
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