Gareth Bale dodged the chance to rule out a prospective move away from Real Madrid, although he did insist he is "happy" at the Bernabeu following his hat-trick against Deportivo La Coruna on Saturday.
The Welshman is heavily linked with a summer move away from Madrid—with the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea said to be interested—having reportedly been "devastated" by the recent sacking of Rafael Benitez, per Matt Law in the Telegraph.
His treble against Depor as Real won their first match under Zinedine Zidane 5-0 indicated Bale remains very much in form at Madrid, but he did not rule out a departure in the near future, per AFP Sport (via Sky Sports):
I don't feel I need to make a statement to anyone. I know what I'm capable of and I just want to keep enjoying my football and when I do that I play my best. I'm happy at the moment. Obviously you can never predict what happens in the future, but I'm enjoying my football at the moment so I'll keep going.
Bale has long been a key target for the Red Devils, but Bleacher Report's Dean Jones recently poured cold water on any chance of an imminent move to Old Trafford for the 26-year-old:
Following Bale's latest comments it seems, for now at least, he is happy at the Bernabeu despite admitting it was a "big disappointment" to see Benitez leave the club, per AFP Sport (via Sky Sports).
Indeed, Antony Kastrinakis in the Sun interpreted Bale's comments as being a big blow for United and believes the former Tottenham Hotspur man will stay at Real as long as he is happy.
However, the player is also media savvy enough to know his words leave the door well and truly ajar.
Bale certainly seems to be enjoying his football at the moment, his weekend hat-trick taking his La Liga tally for the season to 12 in 14 games, while he has also provided seven assists, per WhoScored.com.
United are crying out for a player in such form. They need an attacker who can add some verve to their stale attack.
Saturday saw the Red Devils once again produce a dire attacking display—this time in the FA Cup against League One's Sheffield United, with only a late Wayne Rooney penalty sparing their blushes.
Ian Darke @IanDarke
Man United win can not mask a sterile display greeted with sarcasm by sections of crowd. Agonising for Blades to lose so late.2016-1-9 21:41:08
Unlike previous United teams, there is no standout superstar on the books at Old Trafford. Rooney has been in and out of form, and Memphis Depay and Anthony Martial are young and inconsistent.
The addition of Bale could be the key factor in returning the Manchester outfit to the upper echelons of European football, as he is the type of player who could emulate previous Old Trafford legends such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Ryan Giggs and Eric Cantona.
Bale would not come cheap, with Rory Smith of the Times recently reporting Real president Florentino Perez could demand as much as £150 million were he even be prepared to sell the player.
However, United have shown recently they are unafraid to spend big money, and they will surely be encouraged by the fact Bale has left the door open for a departure from Real in the future.