Chelsea are reportedly readying a £75m offer for Gareth Bale that could trigger Real Madrid to sell the Wales international.
The former Tottenham player has found his second season at the Bernabeu marred by criticism from his own fans, creating a situation that has made his future with the reigning European champions uncertain.
Despite an impressive first term during which he scored crucial goals in the Copa del Rey and Champions League finals, a perceived selfish style of play and tendency to disappear in matches has seen his previous contributions forgotten.
It's understood Bale wants to remain a Real Madrid player and win over the fans, however his club are reportedly willing to let the world's most expensive player leave. The Spanish club has shown in recent years their willingness to let major players depart, with Mesut Ozil and Angel Di Maria both arriving in the Premier League after time was called on their Bernabeu careers.
Bale scored twice in Wales' 3-0 win over Israel to issue a reminder of his abilities and afterwards said: "I don't need to answer the critics.
"I know, and everyone around me knows, what I can do.
"There are ups and downs in football, you have to take it with a pinch of salt and all you can do is respond with your performances on the pitch, like that.
"I don't feel I need to prove anyone wrong or right, I just need to play my football."
According to the Daily Mail, Bale could follow a similar path to those trodden by Di Maria and Ozil. Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is said to be willing to meet a reported release clause of £75m for the 25-year-old. Should such a fee be offered, Real Madrid are understood to be willing to do business.
Manchester United are also admirers of Bale - with The Independent's columnist Paul Scholes recently speaking of the impact the Welshman could have at Old Trafford. However, whether Bale will be their priority this summer with other areas appearing in more need of attention, remains to be seen.Reuse content