Bale 'very unlikely' to join Man United as agent rules out loan move
Gareth Bale is "very unlikely" to join Manchester United and will not leave Real Madrid in a loan deal, according to his agent.
Bale joined Madrid in 2013 after emerging as one of the Premier League's best players at Tottenham, commanding what was then a world-record transfer fee of €100million.
His first three seasons were a success, as he scored 47 LaLiga goals in 81 appearances and helped Madrid to two Champions League titles.
However, from an individual perspective, the following three campaigns have been rather more difficult, as Bale has been troubled by fitness problems and struggled to hold down a place in the starting XI.
Madrid are reportedly willing to let him leave and United – who are said to have wanted him when he was at Southampton and Spurs – have been tentatively linked, but a move seems improbable.
"He could fit in there," Bale's agent Jonathan Barnett told Sky Sports News when asked about a potential move to Old Trafford.
"I think he could do very well - he is still one of the best players in the world, but it is very unlikely."
Given Madrid's valuation of Bale and his huge wages, media reports had suggested a loan move away from the Santiago Bernabeu might be more realistic than an outright sale, with Bayern Munich said to be interested.
But Barnett dismissed such a scenario out of hand, adamant only a remarkable offer – and not a loan – would persuade Bale to leave Spain.
"A loan move is not going to happen, there's more chance of me winning Ascot," Barnett added. "I don't think he wants to go out on loan.
"He's got a lovely life and home in Spain. I think it would take something exceptional for him to leave and loans are not on the menu. Obviously, Gareth's situation at Real hasn't improved."