Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas is demanding that Luka Modric be included as part of Real Madrid’s package to pry Gareth Bale from the London club.
The Portugese manager had been assured that Bale would not be allowed to depart this summer but Madrid have positioned themselves so that a move now seems all but inevitable with the player and his agent reported to have set their minds on securing the transfer as soon as possible.
Bale returns to Spurs’s training ground today for treatment on a muscle injury but it is reported that he is unlikely to figure in their friendly with Monaco as he is not in the mental state to line out for the Lilywhites at the moment.
While the muscle injury is genuine it is thought that his lack of playing time on the recent preseason tour of Asia had as much to do with his own concern over jeopardising his potential move to Madrid by exacerbating it and ruling himself out for part of the season.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy had been resolute in his part about entering negotiating, ignoring Madrid’s first offer out of hand but with the player and his representatives now having expressed the extent of Bale’s desire to begin next season at the Bernabeu coupled with the size of Madrid’s offering he is willing to negotiate.
Madrid’s offers are reported to be in the region of £85million which would set a new world transfer record but Levy and Villas-Boas see the opportunity as a good one to raid the Madrid ranks for players who would otherwise not be available.
Modric left White Hart Lane only last year after an acrimonious end to his Spurs career which ended in a stand off between the Croatian and club officials until the Madrid transfer went through.
His season at Madrid has been seen as a failure though and with the signing of midfielders Asier Illarramendi and Isco from Real Scoiedad and Malaga respectively he is likely to struggle for playing time under new manager Carlo Ancelotti.
Villas-Boas is an admirer of the player and was responsible for first unsettling him at Spurs in 2011 when he was Chelsea boss.
Manager and chairman know that they will struggle to replace Bale in real terms but also that clubs will see them as a cash cow once the transfer goes through meaning that the addition of a player of he calibre of Modric, or Fabio Coentrao who is also being mooted as part of the deal, would help ease the upset to the squad.