Speculation linking Gareth Bale with a move away from Real Madrid has died down in recent weeks - and the Wales international’s latest tweet suggests he has no plans to join either Manchester United or Chelsea this summer.
The 25-year-old, who endured a difficult second season at the Bernabeu, was asked by the official Twitter account of the UEFA Champions League what he thought about the final of the showpiece European competition being hosted at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff in 2017.
Bale replied with this 10-word tweet which indicates he has no plans to leave the Spanish giants: “It would be a dream to play there with @realmadrid!!”
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It seems the arrival of Rafael Benitez, who paid Bale a personal visit last month, has settled the former Tottenham star.
Before that, rumours were rife that Bale could be sold by Real Madrid, with Manchester United in pole position to secure his signature.
Bale's problems at Real Madrid
Bale risked angering Real Madrid officials after reportedly telling them he no longer wanted to play on the right wing after feeling isolated in that position last season, while his agent did his star client few favours by saying his teammates were not doing enough on the pitch to help him.
“Real have to work with Gareth and pass the ball to him more,” Jonathan Barnett told the Telegraph in May. “Give him more of the ball and let him show everybody what he’s good at. He’s going to be the best player at Real Madrid when his team-mates work with him and help him. Hopefully Real will come to terms with this.”
Fortunately for Bale, he has the continued backing of the man who brought him to the Bernabeu in the summer of 2013: Real Madrid president Florentino Perez.
Bale determined to silence his critics
Perez has no plans to sell the most expensive footballer of all time - even if it meant Real Madrid could have made a profit on their record signing this summer.
Bale turns 26 in two weeks time and is approaching what promises to be the peak years of his career. Real Madrid would have found it nigh-on impossible to have replaced the Welshman for a player who produces the same number of goals and assists.
Bale has scored 39 goals in 92 appearances for Los Blancos but knows he must score goals on a more regular basis in order to show he was worth the £86 million Real Madrid spent on him.
This is the player who was brought in to replace the goals of Cristiano Ronaldo once the prolific three-time Ballon d’Or winner eventually leaves the Bernabeu.
By committing himself to Real Madrid - despite the lows of last season, which included being whistled by the club’s fans in several matches - Bale has proven that he’s no shrinking violet and is prepared to turn things around through his on-pitch performances.
Real Madrid fan account @RMadridFact tweeted Bale: “Yes, we can definitely get there. Real Madrid never give up! Agree Gareth? ;)”
To which the Welshman replied: “Agreed!!!”
Will Gareth Bale turn things around at Real Madrid next season? Have your say in the comments below!