No-one could have predicted, in 2009, when Bale held the record for the most Premier League appearances for a player without winning their first game (24), that he would now be being linked with a transfer which would warrant him the title as 'the most expensive player ever'.
Heavy speculation this summer has, so far, linked the 23-year-old Welshman with a move to Real Madrid and even Paris Saint-Germain, amid lighter conjecture linking him a few other big European clubs.
However, recent comments made by Real Madrid's President, Florentino Perez, have ignited heavy rumours about the club's budget leniency, in terms of bidding for Bale. Many believe the 66-year-old business tycoon, president of the club since 2000, could be lining up an offer which could surpass the current world record fee which Madrid paid for Cristiano Ronaldo, when they purchased him from Manchester United for £80million in the summer of 2009.
On the other side of the border, the affluent owners of Paris Saint-Germain have made themselves linked with many big-name stars in world football, signing the likes of Beckham, Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva in the process. And adding another name to the list, in the form of Bale, seems a transfer target who's price tag is one which only PSG and a few other clubs could be willing to meet, putting them as possible frontrunners for the Welshman's signature.
Yet, if Bale were to leave Tottenham, it could possibly take a fee climbing into nine figures, to secure his services. Such is his individual importance to the north London outfit, that if he were to leave White Hart Lane, a replacement would not come in the form of a single player. Funds would be required to purchase at least two or three high quality players just to begin mending the dent he would leave in the team.
Given the lack of similar talent to Bale in the Spurs side, this prompts the idea that a nine figure sum could be the reserve price for the winger, most of the money being used for purchasing a few other players, the rest to compensate for the inevitable dip in league position which Tottenham would suffer - theoretically, without Bale's goals last season, Spurs would have been 24 points worse off, leaving them in ninth position.
All Tottenham fans and Premier League neutrals alike, wish to see Bale playing in England next season, yet if a nine figure sum is reached, he may be adorning the white of Madrid come August.
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