Jermain Defoe reveals how Gareth Bale was sulking before Real Madrid transfer

Jermain Defoe has revealed that he got plenty of joy in winding up Gareth Bale in 2013 as the Welshman was sulking at the delay in his transfer to Real Madrid going through.

Bale made what was then a world-record £85.3m switch to Los Blancos in 2013 but as one would expect, Daniel Levy did not make negotiations easy for the La Liga giants, with the deal only going through late in the transfer window.

In the end, it proved to be money well spent for Madrid, with the winger being part of five Champions League-winning sides at the Spanish capital and delivering some clutch performances in a couple of finals.

Tottenham spent the Bale money on seven new recruits but barring Erik Lamela and Christian Eriksen, the others failed to live up to their billing at the North London club.

Real Madrid
(Photo by Kristian Skeie – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)

Gareth Bale was itching for that Real Madrid move

Defoe recalled how the Wales international’s move to the Santiago Bernabeu played out, revealing that his former teammate was in a foul mood all summer.

The 41-year-old said on Defoe & Deeney Football Firsts podcast: “I remember seeing the speculation. Back in the day, agents used to leak stuff, but this one, I thought, ‘nah that’s genuine’.

“There was also potential with Gareth. When he came, I think Benoit Assou-Ekotto was left-back. He went to the African Cup of Nations and I think that’s why he got his chance. The Champions League came around and he just took it to another level.

“We went to Hong Kong. Andre Villas-Boas was the manager. It was documented that the two clubs were trying to agree on a fee and he travelled. I’m thinking, ‘surely you’d stay at home’.

“You know me, I love winding people up. He’s with the physio, training on his own. He started sulking because at this point he’s probably thinking ‘I just want to go to Madrid’.

“I remember having lunch and he’s sulking like a little baby. I said, ‘Gaz, what’s wrong with you? You don’t want to eat? Just because you’re going to Madrid, you’re not going to eat? Just come and eat with the lads’.

“I remember every day just looking at him and laughing. You know when your mum’s told you off and you’re sulking, but you want her to know you’re upset? You want a little cuddle or something? He was sitting there wanting everyone to know he was upset.

“I was like, ‘Gaz, come on, if it don’t happen just stay here – it’s only Madrid’. There was no guarantee it was going to happen. He had to do a pre-season. If it doesn’t happen, you’re a Tottenham player.”

Spurs Web Opinion

It is normal that players would feel anxious if a potential move to Real Madrid is in the balance. However, Bale remained professional during that transfer window and much like Kane this summer, never once publicly demanded to leave Tottenham.

Keep up to date with all the latest Tottenham news and opinion by following SpursWeb’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Related Topics