Real Madrid are reportedly weighing up the possibility of allowing Gareth Bale to leave for free this summer – in a desperate bid to get the Welsh superstar off the books.
Bale was linked with a move to the Chinese Super League last summer but the Spanish giants pulled the plug on a big-money move at the last minute.
The 30-year-old remained put but has suffered another injury-struck season and continues to play a minor role under Zinedine Zidane since the Frenchman returned for his second stint as Madrid boss.
Bale did not move away from the Spanish giants in the January window either, despite links with a move back to Tottenham and his agent, Jonathan Barnett, insists that Bale will see out his contract after a move to China was blocked in 2019.
But the Bernabeu club are now prepared to let him leave for nothing, according to Spanish daily Marca.
Real have seemingly made it clear that they can no longer afford Bale and his high wages, reported to be £15.4million a season
Last month Real Madrid manager Zidane insisted that there is no bad blood between him and Bale, despite the Welsh star saying that he plans to see out his contract at Santiago Bernabeu.
“I have no issue with that, none whatsoever,” Zidane said of Bale seeing out his contract, which runs until the summer of 2022.
“He has a contract and he wants to stay here.
“We talk regularly but I am not going to tell you what I tell my players. We know what Gareth Bale can bring. He has to be fit and ready to do that.
“There are times when he isn’t named in the squad but I wouldn’t read too much into it.
“Everyone has a role and Gareth is a player I will need between now and the end of the season.”