Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has revealed that the Spanish giants made their world-record offer for Gareth Bale after they discovered Manchester United were planning a bid.
Wales international Bale joined Real Madrid from Tottenham in the final days of the summer transfer window for a record £85m fee.
However, Perez has revealed that Manchester United were also keen to sign last season's PFA Premier League Player of the Year, before defending the size of the transfer fee.
“Bale was cheap,” he told Cadena SER this week. “The signing of Gareth Bale is the model of Real Madrid, signing the best player in the world at this moment, and that is what I say.
“All the great players of Real Madrid have been cheap. I will not say the amount, but we must not focus too much on the purchase price.
“Some numbers that have come out I find difficult to understand and, if I were a journalist, I would not have reported them.
“Tottenham did not want to sell and we respected that. Then, when we found out that Manchester United would be making an offer, we made our own."
United boss David Moyes refused to deny the Red Devils had tabled an astronomical £125m for Bale during the transfer window.
However, it appears Bale only ever wanted to join Real Madrid and would not entertain the idea of joining any other club, including Manchester United.
Bale scored on his Real Madrid debut against Villarreal, but failed to make his home debut at the Bernabeu against Getafe on Sunday after picking up a thigh muscle injury in the warm up.