The dismissal of Spanish tactician Rafael Benitez as Real Madrid manager could be a catalyst for the exit of Welsh star Gareth Bale from the club after he was reportedly upset with the decision to part ways with the former Liverpool, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Valencia man.
Bale, who has already been linked with a return to England with Chelsea and Manchester United, has now been left frustrated with the news of French legend Zinedine Zidane’s appointment on Monday evening as Benitez’s replacement in the Real Madrid dugout having blossomed under the Spaniard in the first half of the season scoring nine league goals in addition to seven assists with rumours earlier in the season claiming Benitez wanted to build his team around the 26-year old after facilitating the sale of Portuguese star and 3-time World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo.
The new manager Zinedine Zidane is however a huge fan of Chelsea playmaker Eden Hazard leading to suggestions that the Frenchman’s immense likeness towards the Belgian might lead to a strong Madrid interest thus unsettling Bale at the Santiago Bernebeu. Speaking as recently as last month on Hazard, Zidane said: “I have no doubts he’ll be back. After Messi and Ronaldo, Hazard is my favourite player. It is spectacular to see him play. Do I see him going to Real Madrid? I love the player, that’s all I will say.”
Though Chelsea are adamant Hazard, who recently signed a long-term deal with the Blues, will stay at the club, Madrid’s potential interest in him could be a blessing in disguise in their pursuit of Gareth Bale. Hazard has had a disastrous season so far failing to score at all therefore a swap deal involving the unsettled Bale could be a win-win situation for all parties involved.
Chelsea will however need to see off Manchester United’s long standing interest in the former Tottenham and Southampton star though United would likely be a more appealing club than Roman Abramovich’s team for Gareth Bale due to their huge tradition and the envious tag of being the richest English club. The Old Trafford club won’t want to pass up an opportunity to sign the unsettled Bale having missed out on him when he made his stunning £85m move to Madrid in 2013 despite making a mammoth £100m bid reportedly for his services.