Former Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon has claimed the club’s desperation to sign Gareth Bale this summer is driven by their fear that Cristiano Ronaldo will leave the Bernabeu.
Madrid are believed to have lodged a world-record bid for Tottenham star Bale, and the club’s assistant manager, Zinedine Zidane, told Le 10 Sport this week he hopes to see a deal completed "as soon as possible".
Calderon’s successor, Florentino Perez, has also publicly stated on numerous occasions that Ronaldo will remain at the club but, as yet, the Portugal star has not penned an extension to his current contract, which expires in 2015.
Calderon has now told talkSPORT he believes Ronaldo, linked with the likes of Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain this summer, is unhappy with Perez and could walk away from the Bernabeu.
"I think the president has put all he has on the table (for Bale) just in case he cannot get the renewal of Cristiano," Calderon, who left Madrid in 2009, said. “He is afraid that, at some moment, Cristiano will go and that would be very bad news for Real Madrid.
"What we know is he [Ronaldo] is not happy at all with the attitude and behaviour of the president. At the start of last season, he tried to talk to the president about the renewal of his contract and the talks did not go well.
"Now I understand he is asking for €20 million net every season. That is going to be difficult for Real Madrid to accept because it is around €40 million every year for the club to pay and that is the situation now."
Calderon believes Madrid will be able to secure Bale’s signature this summer, with the Wales international reported to have reiterated his desire to move to the Bernabeu during talks on Wednesday.
"At first, the Spurs president was angry because you don’t want to lose a player like that, but when Bale says he wants to leave, you have to accept it," he said.
Though a regular critic of Perez, Calderon was happy to defend the Madrid president for offering a fee in excess of the £80 million paid for Ronaldo in 2009.
"I think this is very good news for Real Madrid, but I think it is good for Tottenham too because they will get a lot of money,” he said. “He is a fantastic player, and of course the top players are worth a lot to their clubs.
"This is a huge amount of money and it is always controversial in these days to pay that amount of money. I agreed with the fee for Cristiano at the time and it seems the Real president feels it is right to pay this money for Gareth Bale. I think [Bale move] will happen now. They have made many offers — they change the offers, try to offer different players."