Bale should stay at Tottenham - Hoddle

The 55-year-old former Spurs midfielder feels the Wales international would struggle to replicate his form on the continent, amid interest from Liga giants Real Madrid
By Rich Parry

Tottenham legend Glenn Hoddle has advised Gareth Bale to remain at White Hart Lane and resist the temptation to join Real Madrid this summer.

Bale’s scintillating performances for club and country last term have seen him become one of the Spanish side’s top targets, with president Florentino Perez insisting that ‘great players pay for themselves’ when a £85m bid was mooted. Nonetheless, the former Spurs midfielder feels he should stay in N17.

“I would like him to stay as a Spurs fan, but I think football wise, for him, it would be the right decision,” Hoddle told Goal.  “Not financially [for him], not for Tottenham’s finances either if they get a massive bid.”

2/1 Tottenham are 2/1 with bet365 to finish in the top four next season
Bale, who scored 30 times in 58 appearances for club and country last season, became only the third player in history to receive both the PFA’s Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year accolades in the same season.

But Hoddle, who himself left Spurs for foreign soil when he joined AS Monaco in 1987, feels the Welshman would struggle to carry that form and level of consistency to La Liga.

“If he was to go abroad, I think he’d struggle at the moment to settle off the pitch,” he added. “I’ve done it myself, I’ve experienced it so I can talk from experience, you have to be content off the pitch to play well, and I’m not sure that would happen at this moment in time.

“If he moved within England he’d obviously settle a lot quicker.”

Bale was the driving force for a Tottenham side which, despite collecting 72 points – a Premier League record for the club – failed to qualify for the Champions League, a competition they have not returned to since their inaugural campaign back in the 2010-11 season.

This, according to Hoddle, is why Tottenham must show their ambition, and convince Bale to stay at the club for at least another season by showing intent in the summer transfer window.

“The first thing I would be saying is ‘what intent have Tottenham got?’ Are they going to add two, three, four really good players to the squad, to get into the Champions League and challenge for that next year?

“They’re going to need a bigger squad to deal with the Europa League onslaught as well.”

And it appears the club are trying just that. As revealed by Goal on Friday, Spurs are confident of securing deals for both David Villa and Paulinho during the window, after the Barcelona striker confirmed to club officials that he'd be happy to join them this summer.

Hoddle was speaking at the launch of the Fans All Star Global Vote 2013, offering football supporters the opportunity to pick their ultimate European and Rest of the World XI’s.

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