New boy Soldado wants Bale to stay
Villas-Boas lands striker he craves as deal finally goes through for Spaniard
Liverpool have put in a €25 million bid for Diego Costa (left) of Spain’s Atletico Madrid. Photograph: Mariana Bazo/Reuters
Roberto Soldado has urged Gareth Bale to remain at Tottenham Hotspur after he agreed a €30 million move from Valencia that has seen the London club break their transfer record for the second time this summer and provided manager Andre Villas-Boas with the centre forward he has craved.
Bale’s future continues to dominate the agenda, as Real Madrid press to sign him for a world record €100 million and Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy seeks to make them pay an even heavier price.
He has asked for Real’s 20-year-old striker Alvaro Morata to be included in the deal but the notion has been dismissed at the Bernabeu, not least because he is the young player the club rate most highly.
Real have suggested left back Fabio Coentrao as a possible make-weight and he was withdrawn from their pre-season tour game against Los Angeles Galaxy in Phoenix yesterday because of a muscle injury.
Did not train
Villas-Boas is an admirer of Coentrao, his fellow Portuguese. Bale did not train again with the Tottenham first-team squad yesterday morning because, officially, he has struggled with a minor muscle problem for the past two weeks. He will not feature in tomorrow’s friendly at Monaco.
Bale is desperate for Levy to find a solution that allows him to join Real.
The Soldado transfer, however, represented eye-catching business for Tottenham and the 28-year-old Spain international also gave his view on the Bale saga.
“Bale is a great footballer and you can see the effort Tottenham are making to prevent him from leaving,” Soldado said. “Of course, I want him to stay.”
Tottenham have made decisive moves regarding their incoming players. Soldado has been a long-standing target for Villas-Boas and the manager encouraged Levy to meet the €30 million buyout clause in the player’s contract.
An issue over the payments to Soldado’s agents has been resolved.
Soldado, capped 11 times by Spain, scored 30 goals in 46 appearances for Valencia last season and his arrival has delighted Villas-Boas, who had only Jermain Defoe and Emmanuel Adebayor as recognised centre forwards last season.
Tottenham first broke their transfer record last month with the €20 million signing of the midfielder Paulinho from Corinthians. They remain active on the market, with Steaua Bucharest’s -rated centre-half Vlad Chiriches in their sights.
The Anfield club have moved for the twice-capped Brazil international despite ongoing uncertainty over Luis Suárez’s future and having been frustrated on several big-money signings.
Liverpool’s offer is understood to meet the release clause in Costa’s contract and the club are hopeful the 24-year-old, and Atlético, will agree to a deal swiftly. Arsenal, the only club to have made an offer for Suárez, have also been linked with the Brazilian this summer.