Tottenham are confident of signing Gareth Bale today after breakthrough in Real Madrid talks

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Gareth Bale returning to Tottenham - we've heard this one before. 

It's a rumour that does the rounds every transfer window as the Welshman's stock at Real Madrid falls lower and lower.

However, for the first time we have the most concrete report from The Times that Bale coming back to north London is a genuine possibility.

According to the newspaper, Spurs believe they have made a breakthrough and are confident they will sign their former superstar today. 

The 30-year-old left White Hart Lane for the Bernabéu in 2013 in a then world-record £85 million deal. 

While he would cost just a fraction of that now, the finer details of a contract still need to be ironed out. 

Daniel Levy, master-negotiator though he may be, has the not-insignificant hurdle to overcome of Bale's £500,000-a-week wages. 

It can only be assumed he would be willing to take a massive pay cut to leave Spain. 

Levy met with Madrid present Florentino Perez earlier this week for talks. 

Zinedine Zidane has never made a secret of his disdain for Bale and he has also been chastised by the media and whistled by the fans. 

Deportivo Alaves v Real Madrid CF  - La Liga

One Spanish newspaper described his behaviour as "unforgivable" when he was pictured with the now-infamous "Wales. Golf. Madrid. In that order" flag.

Bale scored 55 goals in 203 games during his first spell at Tottenham. 

ANALYSIS

GIVEMESPORT'S Kat Lucas: 

The Jose Mourinho effect! If it happens, it appears Levy will have been cornered into the statement signing Tottenham have been crying out for. 

Bale's injuries are an obvious concern, especially if Tottenham are relying on him to fill in for Harry Kane for the rest of the season as their go-to goal machine. The arrival of Steven Bergwijn also means Son Heung-min can play up front when required, however, so overall, this has to go down as a decent few weeks of transfer business. 

Of course, we've been here before. Many Tottenham fans can be forgiven for raising an eyebrow at these reports and won't believe it until he's pictured holding aloft a Lilywhite shirt.

The manner of his original departure has long been forgotten and he'd undoubtedly be welcomed back in a heartbeat. 

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