Football

Gareth Bale completes world record move to Real Madrid

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Gareth Bale has joined Real Madrid, Tottenham have confirmed.

The Welshman has been at the centre of a protracted transfer saga this summer, but has finally secured his move to the Bernabeu after spending six years at White Hart Lane.

Although neither Tottenham or Real Madrid have confirmed the fee, it is believed the deal is worth £86 million (€100m) - making him the most expensive player in the history of the game.

In a statement released on Tottenham's official website, Bale thanked the north London club's fans support and said he was delighted to have completed a "dream" move to Madrid.

“I would like to thank everyone at the Club, the Chairman, Board, staff, coaches and players – and most of all the fantastic fans who I hope will understand this amazing career opportunity," he said. 

“I am not sure there is ever a good time to leave a club where I felt settled and was playing the best football of my career to date. I know many players talk of their desire to join the club of their boyhood dreams, but I can honestly say, this is my dream come true.

“I am well aware that I would not be at the level I am today were it not for firstly Southampton and then Spurs standing by me during some of the tougher times and affording me the environment and support they have.

“Tottenham will always be in my heart and I’m sure that this season will be a successful one for them. I am now looking forward to the next exciting chapter in my life, playing football for Real Madrid." 

Bale joined Tottenham from Southampton in 2007, going on to make 203 appearances for the club and scoring 55 times.

That includes the 21 Premier League goals he scored last term to propel Tottenham within one point of qualifying for the Champions League.

Tottenham have moved to invest much of the money they will receive for Bale already, splashing in excess of £100 million and breaking their own transfer record three times on the likes of Paulinho, Roberto Soldado and Erik Lamela.

"Gareth was a player we had absolutely no intention of selling as we look to build for the future," said Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy in a statement on the club's website.

"He is a player whose career we have fostered and developed and he was only a year into his new four year contract.

"Such has been the attention from Real Madrid and so great is Gareth's desire to join them, that we have taken the view that the player will not be sufficiently committed to our campaign in the current season.

"We have, therefore, with great reluctance, agreed to this sale and do so in the knowledge that we have an exceptionally strong squad to which we have added no fewer than seven top internationals. More importantly, we have an immense team spirit and a dressing room that is hungry for success.

"We wish Gareth all the best in the future and he shall always be welcome at the Lane."

Earlier today Andre Villas-Boas' side succumbed to a 1-0 defeat against rivals Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium, after which the Portuguese boss confirmed Bale's move was imminent.

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Topics:
Tottenham Hotspur
Gareth Bale
Real Madrid
Football
Premier League

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