Real Madrid's most expensive transfers
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Gareth Bale could be set to make another return to the Premier League in the January transfer window after Real Madrid made it clear they want to sell the Wales forward. Bale is about to enter the final six months of his Real contract and the Spanish club have no intention of extending his deal.
The 32-year-old spent last season on loan with Tottenham and has found himself frozen out once more after returning to Real over the summer.
Bale has made just three appearances for the club this season, all of which came in August, and is almost certain to leave in 2022.
According to Marca, he has been earmarked for transfer alongside Isco, while manager Carlo Ancelotti would also listen to offers for Mariano Diaz, Luka Jovic, Eden Hazard and club captain Marcelo.
Bale scored 11 goals in 20 Premier League appearances for Spurs last season so a January transfer back to the league is not beyond the realms of possibility.
Here are four clubs who could be tempted to sign the Wales international.
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Bale has plenty of history with Spurs and north London is therefore likely to be his destination of choice.
He has contributed 72 goals and 61 assists in 237 appearances over two spells with the club and still has time on his side.
Daniel Levy found a way to get around Bale’s whopping £600,000 per week wages last season, with Real forced to pay the majority, so the chairman could once again pull some strings.
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Antonio Conte has Tottenham on the up, with Harry Kane, Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura starring in attack, but his arrival as manager mid-season reportedly came on the condition that Spurs backed him in the transfer market.
During the time with Michael Edwards as sporting director, Liverpool have become known for their astute recruitment in the transfer market.
The signing of a 32-year-old forward on gigantic wages does not fit into their normal mould.
Yet with Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah off to Cameroon to compete in the African Cup of Nations with Senegal and Egypt respectively, they are short of options up front.
Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino remain at Jurgen Klopp’s disposal, but a new signing would be welcome. Stranger things have happened.
The Magpies are a real possibility due to two factors: their new-found wealth and their perilous league position.
Newcastle are 19th in the Premier League with one win from the opening 19 matches following their 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Monday.
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund would not have taken an 80 per cent stake in the club if they were in the Championship, but that is a very real threat now.
Newcastle need new players in January, especially since Monday’s game saw Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin depart with injuries.
If there is one team willing to shell out on Bale’s wages, it could just be Newcastle.
The Hammers are wobbling slightly after making a brilliant start to the season.
David Moyes’ side are without a win in five matches across all competitions and could do with a goal scorer to back up Michail Antonio.
Nikola Vlasic cost £25million from CSKA Moscow in the summer but is yet to score in 14 games for the club.
With West Ham forced to compete in the Europa League as well as the Premier League, they could do with greater firepower up front.
Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky took a 27 per cent stake in West Ham in November and could be willing to make a splash in January.
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