Mourinho: I tried to sign Bale

The Portuguese claims he wanted to bring the Welshman to the Spanish capital last year before a move fell through, and has backed Carlo Ancelotti to help the 24-year-old thrive
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed he attempted to lure Tottenham star Gareth Bale to Real Madrid last season.

Talks between the Spanish club and Spurs over a £100 million move for the Wales international have now begun, while Goal exclusively revealed on Friday that Andre Villas-Boas is targeting four signings with the money generated from the winger's switch to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Mourinho believes Madrid would be signing a "fantastic player" and that Carlo Ancelotti will be able to get the best out of Bale.

"I asked the club to buy him [Bale] last season but it was not possible," Mourinho told ESPN.

"It looks like it is happening this season so I am happy for them because they have got a fantastic player but, of course, the numbers are huge numbers and the kid has to go now and there’s pressure to prove that he’s worth that investment.

"I think he’s a fantastic player and the way my Real Madrid was playing, I think it was an easy player to fill a space and to get into that tactical dynamic.

"I don’t know what Carlo [Ancelotti] is thinking now but Carlo is an experienced coach and for sure will get the best out of him."