On the back of a catastrophic capitulation in the El Clasico at the weekend, Real Madrid are in turmoil and Rafael Benitez’s job appears increasingly under threat.
This jaw-dropping defeat also bore witness to Gareth Bale’s second game upon returning from a calf injury that saw him miss the recent international fixtures. Reports have been swelling that the Welshman is imminently considering a Premier League comeback and it makes sense.
One of the predominant reasons for Bale’s move to Spain proved the glimmering prospect of the silverware that the Bernabeu can offer. He is now into his third season and barring La Liga, the 26-year-old has won every trophy on offer to him.
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With the Champions League, Copa Del Rey, FIFA Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup all glistening in his trophy cabinet, what does Bale have left to achieve in Spain?
Furthermore, the sheer fact that Benitez’s job seems on the ropes after just two league defeats this season exemplifies the brutal atmosphere at Real. The Spaniard is being pummelled with criticism when, in fact, it was his team that imploded during their ill-fated 4-0 thrashing to Barcelona.
The shambolic aura at the club is detrimental to Bale’s development, never mind the media butchering he received from Marca in March.
The El Clasico finely demonstrated the distinct difference between Barcelona and Real Madrid. Whilst the Catalan side is a well-drilled and organised team, Benitez's side looks a cluttered swamp of Galacticos all out for personal gain.
There is no doubt that a number of Premier League clubs are interested in Bale and the Welshman may prove keen to flee Los Blancos’ sinking ship.
Manchester United have proven the most prominent club to be linked with Bale; not surprising seeing as Van Gaal’s flanks have been stripped bare. With Memphis Depay now being drafted in as a striker, opposition full backs are having a field-day against the Red Devils.
The acquisition of Bale would undoubtedly add an injection of pace, skill and goals to a United outfit weighed down by a baffling pile of central midfielders. Moreover, at such a prestigious club, Bale’s chances of bagging a league title would skyrocket.
It simply seems a no-brainer that Bale would abandon his Los Blancos struggles and return to the league that he dominated in 2012.
However, regardless of whether it seems logical or not, Florentino Perez is unlikely to allow his £85.3 million investment to simply slip through his fingers. Even if Bale grows more frustrated in Madrid, the club have thrown so much money at the Welshman the club will simply not let him go unless an astronomical transfer offer arrives on their doorstep.
Although a large chunk of the season remains, the weekend has seen Real’s title chances suffer a demoralising blow. If Bale is indeed lonely at the Bernabeu, the Welshman has seemingly no motives to stay in Madrid with the La Liga trophy sliding away by the day.
The passion and joy that saturated his game at Spurs has appeared drained and absent during his Real Madrid tenure; a return to the UK may just prove the answer. Furthermore, football fans nationwide would be incredibly excited to see the mercurial Welshman gracing the Premier League once again.
In addition, the longer Los Blancos’ troubles fester, the negative rumours orbiting the club will only persist longer and the more Bale will be tempted to return to English shores.
In amongst a squad abundant with conflicting egos; a manager out of his depth and being constantly peppered with media attacks and faltering form, the 26-year-old’s Real Madrid dream is swiftly turning sour.
However, despite a move away from Real appearing an easy decision to most of us, Bale's hands seem tied by the financial brutality of Florentino Perez and the powers-that-be at Los Blancos.