A week has passed since the announcement of the completion of the transfer of Gareth Bale from Tottenham to Real Madrid. It’s been completed and we’ll all move on but Tottenham need to take action immediately on three fronts as a consequence of events related to this transfer.
1. End special relationship with Real Madrid.
I wrote about the consequences of the special arrangement between the two clubs in June and I know that the special arrangement has nothing to do with transfers but in any partnership, relationship or agreement, the groups, people, organisations involved should deal with each other in a respectful manner.
If Real Madrid had done so then Zinedine Zidane, Luka Modric and various other Madrid players wouldn’t have made comments on Bale, the club when told by Tottenham that they did not wish to sell Bale this summer would not have pursued a media propaganda attack headed up by Marca and the Spanish press.
Even since the deal was completed Real have continued to put the boot in by:
(i) pushing through the sale of Mesut Ozil to Spurs greatest rivals when no agreement could be reached on any player in whom Spurs were interested as part of the Bale transfer or as a separate deal. The report by Charles Sale in the Daily Mail Sports Agenda suggests that this transfer was a deliberate act by the Real Madrid president, Florentino Perez, against Spurs and Daniel Levy for having the audacity to stand firm against Real for so long.
(ii) denying they paid what everyone accepts is a new world record fee so as to appease the super-ego that is Christiano Ronaldo.
Real Madrid may be one of the top clubs in world football but their behaviour and actions were not those of someone in a friendly agreement or partnership. Real have acted like back street bullies and that’s probably doing a disservice to the thugs.
2. Lodge A Complaint with FIFA
All clubs, including Spurs, are involved in some form of skullduggery in the transfer market, letting it be known that they are interested in a player but Real Madrid have taken it to extremes for many years. It is not good enough for such action to be accepted as “it’s the way Real do things and eventually they’ll get their man”.
It’s time that Tottenham stood up to them or they’ll be back in twelve months time looking to sign Jan Vertonghen or Hugo Lloris or whoever takes their fancy and by the end of the transfer window Spurs will have succumbed once again.
Someone needs to take action against Real’s tactics and it might as well be Spurs and Daniel Levy who take the lead. Some other clubs might then reveal the lengths to which Real went to push through earlier transfers.
What would be the outcome of such a complaint against Real? Probably very little but at least it might make them more cautious in approaching Tottenham in the future.
3. Inform Players that Tottenham will not respond to ThreatsDaniel Levy may have taken Real Madrid for every euro he could get by prolonging negotiations throughout the summer but Gareth Bale was more valuable to Spurs as a player than all the money Real were prepared to throw towards White Hart Lane in order to force through the deal.
Yes, Spurs have spent it on quality players to strengthen the team overall but unless one or two of those players step up, Spurs are now missing the type of player, which every top team has, who can bring a touch of the unexpected to change a game at critical moments. Opponents will no longer fear playing Tottenham minus Bale in the way they did when he was in the team.
Spurs have brought together a squad of outstanding players and in January or next summer any one of them could become a target for one of the Champions League teams. Fans criticised Dimitar Berbatov and Luka Modric for going on ‘strike’ and it was thought that Gareth Bale wouldn’t do the same. His convenient ‘injury’, however, kept him out of Spurs opening matches and Andre Villas-Boas spoke of the intense pressure Bale had put Tottenham under to push through his transfer. SkySports reported AVB’s comments from an article in the Daily Telegraph.
The pressure we were subjected to by the player has been intense. The influence of Real Madrid has been very big and you get to a point where you have to consider if it’s feasible not to accept an offer and whether you can press on with a player in that state of mind.
Tottenham must take a stand against players with lengthy contracts deciding they want to leave as soon as Manchester United, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Barcelona or whoever shows an interest in them. In the current situation every Spurs player knows that if he wants to leave all he needs to do is to be awkward as Berbatov, Modric and now Bale have been, and with time Spurs will give in to their demands. Bale has now said that even if Spurs had been in the Champions League this season, he would have signed for Real. It’t time to end this unacceptable arrangement where players can just ignore their contracts and decide to move on.
This past summer Wayne Rooney wanted to go to Chelsea – he’s still at Old Trafford, Luis Suarez wanted to go anywhere but Liverpool wouldn’t sell him, Christian Benteke handed in a transfer request at Aston Villa but didn’t leave while Barcelona were interested in Daniel Agger and David Luiz but neither Liverpool n or Chelsea were prepared to sell. Of the top names who could have changed clubs in the window which has just closed only Tottenham and Everton yielded to the wishes of the player and his agent with the late sale of Bale and Marouane Fellaini.
Tottenham are looking to build a successful team which they’ll need to fill the proposed new stadium but if they continue to sell their best players on an annual basis they will never achieve their two long-term goals. Daniel Levy needs to take appropriate action now to stem the flow of star players from White Hart Lane – it will be too late to stand wringing our hands in disappointment in five months or a year’s time when yet another player has completed the move to the team of his “boyhood dreams”.
Act now Mr Levy – you’ll have the full backing of every Spurs supporter and it’s not many club chairmen who could say that.