Tottenham Hotspur broke their club record transfer fee for a second time this summer yesterday by completing the £26million transfer of Valencia striker Roberto Soldado.
"Bale is a great footballer and you can see the effort Tottenham are making to prevent him from leaving," Soldado said. "Of course, I want him to stay.”
However reports elsewhere suggest Soldado is unlikely to get his wish, with speculation that a £105million fee has been agreed upon with Real Madrid for Bale, but the two clubs still to work out how to make up that value with players from the Spanish side.
Fabio Coentrao has been removed from the Madrid squad for a friendly with LA Galaxy apparently due to injury, but they are unwilling to let Alvaro Morata move as part of the deal.
If Bale does depart for a world record fee, Spurs are reportedly planning a shopping spree with the money from the deal in order to try and build a squad capable of ensuring they claim a Champions League place next season.
Although some teams will inevitably raise their prices when they know Spurs have the Bale money to spend, there are still bargains to be had like QPR’s Loic Remy, who can apparently leave the relegated side for £8million.
In terms of direct replacements for Bale, Erik Lamela reportedly remains a target, and there is also speculation that Javier Pastore and Christian Eriksen are on the London club’s shortlist.
Eriksen would likely be available at around €15million, although Pastore and Lamela would both likely cost over £25million.
Along with Lamela, another Roma player who could be a target is Miralem Pjanic, who has been linked with Spurs several times over the past year. With Franco Baldini on their backroom staff, Spurs might hope the former Roma director could help with deals for Pjanic and/or Lamela.
image: © andybrannan