Former footballer Tony Cascarino urged Tottenham Hotspur to avoid signing Gareth Bale in the January transfer window after calling the potential move a ‘very expensive’ risk.
On Friday, Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane confirmed that the 30-year-old would not be leaving the Santiago Bernabeu during the transfer window’s final day amid reports suggesting he could have been set for a return to north London.
According to The Times, Daniel Levy had attempted to bring the Welshman back to Spurs, to the point which Tottenham officials had felt a deal was possible before the deadline passed. Writing in the same publication on Friday afternoon, Cascarino had advised against such a move, arguing that Bale would hardly be the player they sold to Real Madrid in 2013.
He said: “It would be a risk, and a very expensive one. Tottenham are basing this on what he did three or four years ago, but they should really be concerned about the type of player they would be getting. Is he going to be that explosive player who practically ended the career of Maicon at Inter Milan in 2010? I doubt it very much. He has become a bit-part player at Madrid.
“Tottenham need a striker and they would consider playing Gareth down the middle as a versatile forward. He can play in that position, but is he a natural centre forward? No. Does he lead the line? No. So you are desperately relying on that explosive pace. It would be a big risk.”
It certainly looks as though Bale’s career in Madrid is on the wane, with the winger scoring in double figures in four of his first five seasons in Spain. However, last season he scored just eight times in 29 league appearances, while he has figured sporadically this term and netted on just three occasions from 15 appearances in league, cup and European competition.
So despite earning multiple Champions League crowns in the Spanish capital, it looks as though Bale is hardly the goal threat he used to be. In fact, his most prolific league season remains his final campaign at Spurs when he notched 21 on the way to earning the PFA Player of the Year award in 2012/13.
Therefore, Cascarino may have been right to warn Spurs off their former star, especially if he was to be their answer to their current striking woes judging by his recent showings in front of goal.
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