Gareth Bale’s return to Tottenham is yet to be finalised, according to Zinedine Zidane, who hailed the Wales international’s “spectacular” contribution to Real Madrid.
Bale’s loan move to Tottenham, who he left to join Madrid in 2013, is expected to be confirmed after he flew to London on Friday and was seen entering the Premier League club’s training ground.
The 31-year-old was an increasingly marginalised figure under Zidane as Madrid won LaLiga last season, cutting quite the contrast to his goalscoring turns in the 2014 and 2018 Champions League finals.
An apparent breakdown in relations with his coach has been accepted as the main reason for Bale seeking an exit from the Spanish capital but, speaking ahead of the start of his side’s LaLiga defence at Real Sociedad, Zidane insisted there was no personality clash.
“I’m not annoyed that people are blaming me for his departure because it’s not like that,” the France great told a Saturday news conference.
“The matter is more complicated than that. What I can say is that we didn’t have any problems between us.
“No one is going to take away what he’s done at Real Madrid. We didn’t have any problems, it wasn’t like that.
“I wish him the best. I haven’t spoken to him. What he’s done here has been phenomenal – you can’t dispute that because he’s won a lot and shown his quality.”
The lack of confirmation of Bale’s signing has caused a measure of anxiety among the Tottenham fanbase and Zidane suggested there are still some details to be ironed out.
“For now, Bale is one of our players,” he said “The matter still has to be finalised.
“We’re not going to talk about things that don’t make sense. Bale has been spectacular.”
Sergio Regulion is another player set to move from Madrid to Spurs, having travelled alongside Bale.
The left-back’s impressive season on loan with Europa League winners Sevilla was not enough to earn another chance at the Santiago Bernabeu, despite a poll run by newspaper Marca revealing 70 per cent of fans wanted him to stay.
“The first thing I have to do is congratulate him on last season,” Zidane said.
“We have two players for each position – no more. I have two left-backs and I can’t have more because then it’s a lot.
“I wish him the best because he had a good season at Sevilla.”