Some would take the money and run. The more romantic of football fan would like the player to refuse the offer and declare eternal love to his club, whilst the cynics cry out for the manager and club to show some cojones and hold the player to his contract.
In most cases, however, the first option is considered a success for all parties involved, while the fans’ feelings will no doubt float between indifference, disappointment and, more rarely, a “thank you and good luck” attitude if he was to be sold.
As Spanish newspaper Marca announced that Real Madrid are prepared to table a whopping £85m for Gareth Bale, many Spurs fans undoubtedly felt a shiver down their spine at the thought of Bale-less side.
It wouldn’t be the first time a Spurs fan felt that shiver after Spurs looked a little flat without their star man last season and only won two games since the turn of the year without Bale scoring. Spurs also didn’t look threatening without Bale as they lost to Sunderland in the Barclays Asia Trophy this week, but that was merely a friendly in awful conditions.
The Welshman’s formidable form over the last couple of seasons has seen him develop into one of the greatest players in the world and, despite Andre Villas Boas’ reiterated belief that Bale will remain in North London, Real Madrid’s siren could prove irresistible for the 24-year-old.
As good as Bale is – and he’s very, very good – would Spurs be wise to turn down such a lucrative offer and, say, run the risk to be forced to sell the Welshman for an inferior price in 12 months time?
At the peak of his powers, and with a flurry of individual awards in his cabinet, Bale is probably worth the money Real Madrid are reportedly ready to offer, but were his form to drop or he to suffer an injury, would Spurs be able to command such a huge fee next summer?
The counter argument to this thesis is that, without Bale, Spurs would be a largely inferior side, while his sale would cast doubts over the club’s ambitions, but is selling a prize asset really such a bad option in this day and age? Afterall, Manchester United sold Ronaldo and went on to win two titles.
Spurs find themselves in a very similar situation to the one Napoli were in a couple of weeks ago when, fronted with PSG’s insisted courting of Edinson Cavani, they soon realised that parting ways with the Uruguayan striker was their only option.
Like Bale, Cavani was his club’s best player by far, accounting for 40% of Napoli’s goals last season. Cavani managed to turn the Partenopei into title challengers during his three seasons at the San Paolo, during which he netted 78 goals in 104 league games but, unlike the Welshman, Napoli knew none of their domestic rivals could afford Cavani.
Despite their desire to hold on to their best player, Napoli agreed to sell Cavani for €64m (£55m), quickly investing part of that money on Gonzalo Higuain who will join the club from Real Madrid for a fee between £30m-32m. It is unlikely that will be the end of Rafa Benitez’s business this summer.
Considering that, by selling Bale, Spurs could pocket £30m more than Napoli did for Cavani, AVB would be presented with a rather formidable budget, one that, in theory, should allow him to purchase not only the world class striker Spurs are desperate for, but also another two top-quality players.
While selling Bale would deprive Spurs of a superb match-winner, who’s to say that Roberto Soldado (priced at £25m) and some other quality additions couldn’t help Spurs to reach a top four spot and, dare we say it, even more than that?
After all, despite Bale’s heroics, Spurs missed out on a Champions League spot last season and have failed to get their hands on any silverware since winning the League Cup in 2008 – at a time when the Welshman was a more peripheral figure – just as Napoli only managed to win the Coppa Italia during Cavani’s spell at the club.
Furthermore, Spurs are increasingly matured a reputation for being a “one-man team”, over reliant on the Welshman abilities, to the point where many teams feel that stopping Bale – as hard a task as it is – is enough to neutralise AVB’s team.
Were Bale to leave, replacing him would be almost impossible, but with £85m in the club’s coffers, Spurs could have plenty of options to strengthen their squad, even without their talismanic Welshman.
Spurs fans, should Levy accept £85m and rebuild the team or is worth to hold on to Bale for at least another season? Let us know your thoughts below or, better still, you can follow Football Rascal on Twitter and Facebook by just clicking the links. It would be rude not to!