LONDON • Manchester United's hopes of signing Gareth Bale have been dealt another blow after the Real Madrid star's agent insisted that the forward hopes to see out his career in Spain.
United failed in a near-£100 million (S$218 million) bid to sign the player from Tottenham Hotspur two summers ago, when he joined Real in a record £85 million move.
The Premier League giants inquired about his availability this summer, only to be rebuffed.
The subsequent collapse of David de Gea's proposed move to Real from Old Trafford on transfer deadline day is unlikely to have improved United's prospects of succeeding with a fresh approach for Bale. And another obstacle was presented by his agent on Tuesday.
Jonathan Barnett insisted that Bale's only interest is to stay in Spain as he bids to add the Primera Liga title and Ballon d'Or to the Champions League winners' medal he won with Real last year.
"I think he's very happy at Real Madrid and, hopefully, he'll stay there the rest of his career," Barnett said. "Real are the best club in the world and they bought him.
"He badly wants to see Real Madrid and himself achieve certain targets, which he has always wanted ever since we first got together.
"He hasn't won the Spanish league yet. He wants to win that and the Ballon d'Or is something he wants to win."
Barnett is certain that Bale, who scored twice in his last La Liga tie before the international break and has taken Wales to within a point of qualifying for the Euro 2016 Finals, will flourish this season.
THE TIMES, LONDON