Real Madrid Begin Gareth Bale Siege by Riling Up Both Halves of North London

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Real Madrid Begin Gareth Bale Siege by Riling Up Both Halves of North London
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

It was bound to happen at some point, but Real Madrid have finally opened the bidding for Tottenham’s Gareth Bale.

Florentino Perez made his initial outlay, according to the Mirror and Times, of players and cash for the Welshman.

The Mirror think that Angel di Maria is part of the package, sending the pseudo-winger to Spurs in lieu of the enormous price tag that has been attached to the White Hart Lane superstar.

The Times go so far as to mention throwing in forward Gonzalo Higuain and left-back Fabio Coentrao as makeweights in the move. That would certainly get Arsenal’s attention, seeing as multiple sources like to think the Gunners have all but completed a deal for the striker.

If nothing else, it is—potentially—the first concrete offer the Madrid president has sent to Daniel Levy about the winger, valued somewhere in the region of £85 million.

On the side, Marca—doing their usual due diligence when it comes to matters like this—have implied that Bale is going to do his part to make sure the move goes forward.

What makes this interesting is the bit concerning Higuain from the Times.

Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

It’s not often that a player seemingly near to a deal with one club—as Higuain seems to be according to the Mail, Independent, Telegraph and Sky Sports—would suddenly be thrown out in front of their blood rivals.

Tottenham do need a forward and judging from the looks of things at left-back, what is Madrid’s rationale for such a move? Do they think that, if Spurs are resigned to sell Bale, the brain trust at White Hart Lane would do the Gunners harm in return by stealing their main transfer of the summer to this point?

And if it is true to any extent that Higuain could be dangled as bait, what would Arsenal's response be? Would they expedite their transfer of the Argentine? Would they back out of the deal? It is potentially an odd position for Arsene Wenger to be put in and certainly one that would be an unwelcome sight.

It is hard to pinpoint what exactly Madrid aim to do by showcasing a piece that is almost already out the door. It does lend credence to the idea, though, that the Spaniards are ready to throw everyone short of Cristiano Ronaldo towards London to make their major move of the summer happen.

There also is a certain amount of pressure on Perez to make a deal happen. After all, the most powerful position at the club—the president, a spot Miguel Delaney at ESPNFC delved into—is expected to deliver the goods.

Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

Perez is also used to getting what he wants in the end. Whether it was Luis Figo, David Beckham, Ronaldo, Luka Modric or anyone else, Madrid almost always get their man.

The Mirror, within the same article as above, made a note that Levy is still rejecting things outright as Tottenham will try to mount a more determined front for this summer’s prime-time drama.

It will be a major coup for Levy if he can hold on to Bale but it will then become an all or nothing 2013-14 campaign. The margins, if there were any for Spurs, will be cut to razor-thin strips from the first whistle against Crystal Palace.

A siege is setting in around the perimeter of White Hart Lane. How much of the ramparts have been rebuilt from last year’s edition remains to be seen.

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