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AVB denies reports of Bale departure

Real Madrid goalkeeper Diego Lopez shares his thoughts on Barcelona's new coach Gerardo Martino, and the possibility of Real signing Gareth Bale from Tottenham Hotspur.

Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas has denied reports in Spain that Gareth Bale has agreed a six-year contract to join Real Madrid.

Madrid newspaper Marca published claims that Bale has signed up to join Real Madrid this summer, with the story suggesting the Wales international had told Spurs he wanted to move to the Spanish capital last week.

The paper said a long contract had been agreed with Bale's agent, Jonathan Barnett, but a deal with the North London club had yet to be finalised - but Villas-Boas was quick to dispute the claims.

"On Gareth, I want to repeat what I was telling you last season and what I was telling you from the beginning of pre-season so I cannot extend myself," the Spurs boss, speaking in Hong Kong, said.

"He’s a player that we are willing to continue to have, he’s a Tottenham player, he’s one of the most fantastic players in the world at the moment and we are counting on him for the future.

"He is not for sale at any price, and there has been no offer from anyone."

Nevertheless, Marca is adamant that Bale wants to make the move, and has reported a meeting between his agent and the Real hierarchy.

The paper said Barnett produced a photograph of a ten-year-old Bale in a Real Madrid shirt and told Real president Florentino Perez: "Have no doubts - Gareth has wanted to play for Madrid since he was a kid."

Bale will not play for Tottenham in a pre-season game against Sunderland on Wednesday due to a minor injury, but Villas-Boas expects him to be available for the second game of the club’s Far East tour.


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