Real Madrid

Real Madrid: Gareth Bale's agent says he remains in Zidane's plans

"The only people who know what’s going on are Zidane, Gareth and the president of Real Madrid and they’re all very happy with the situation," said Jonathan Barnett.

Real Madrid: Gareth Bale's agent says he remains in Zidane's plans

Gareth Bale is determined to remain at Real Madrid and is still an important part of the squad, according to his agent, Jonathan Barnett, who spoke to UK radio station Talksport on Monday morning. 

The Wales forward, 30, has become a peripheral figure at the Bernabéu under Zinedine Zidane this season and is involved in something of a stand-off with the suits at the club, who seem eager to offload their record signing on a permanent deal but have been unable to find a suitor in the last two transfer windows. Tottenham were credited with an interest in January but Bale reportedly didn't fancy a pay cut - and Madrid instructively did not offer to foot any of the bill to send Bale back to London. That suggests Zidane does still see Bale as a useful squad member, as the Frenchman has insisted on several occasions, a view which was backed by Barnett who said he had held discussions with the club about Bale's future. 

"I think people don’t know anything about what’s going on. People write articles, make comments and they have no idea what they’re talking about, and they themselves probably wouldn’t do it [leave Real Madrid]. It’s not up to me, but Gareth believes there’s a still a future at Real Madrid. His family are very happy and settled and he has a lovely lifestyle, so he can pick and choose where he wants to play." Barnett said. 

Bale's succulent contract, which is worth a reported 500,000 euros a week, is the obvious stumbling block to any move and Barnett confirmed that few clubs could even begin to consider a move for the Welshman. “There was no chance to go back to Spurs," the agent said. "For most clubs he’s out of their league, financially. It’s easy for people to say 'give up the money and play somewhere else' but he’s happy in Madrid and his kids have grown up there, his family are settled. I’ve been told he’s still a big part of Real Madrid. The only people who know what’s going on are Zinedine Zidane, Gareth and probably the president of Madrid and they’re all very happy with the situation."

Wales, Golf, Madrid... 

Regarding the controversy surrounding Bale's association with the Wales, Golf, Madrid... in that order flag during recent internationals, Barnett noted that the press were largely responsible for stoking that particular flame. 

"He doesn’t read the criticism, most sports people don’t read the press. In Madrid a lot of bad journalism takes place, they’re very biased, they write whatever they like. Marca and AS are not exactly Pulitzer-prize winning and most of their stories are made up.The fans have booed Zidane, they’ve booed Ronaldo and other great players, but Gareth has given the club a lot. As he doesn’t do press, he doesn’t give a lot of interviews and he’s a quiet person he’s become a sitting target for them. I think it's disgusting really, it was just a joke."