Welsh star forward Gareth Bale has a new club. Sort of.
Bale re-joined Tottenham Hotspur, with whom he previously played between 2007 and 2013, arriving on a season-long loan from Real Madrid.
The Premier League side confirmed the move on social media over the weekend.
Bale was previously deemed surplus at Santiago Bernabeu after playing just 16 games last season. The 31-year-old forward was linked with several different teams, but Tottenham was the fastest and secured themselves a marquee signing in what has been a lukewarm transfer window for the London club so far.
“It’s just incredible to be back, and hopefully now I can get some match fitness and get under way and really help the team, and hopefully win trophies,” said Bale. “I always thought when I did leave that one day I would love to come back. The opportunity now has arisen, and I feel like it’s a good fit.”
According to reports, Tottenham will pay around 40 percent of Bale’s $771,000 weekly salary as part of the deal while Real Madrid will take care of the rest.
Gareth Bale became one of the world’s best players during his first stint with Tottenham, making 203 appearances for the club and being selected as Premier League’s best player two times. He left London in the summer of 2013 to join Real in a record $120 million transfer.
Bale won a number of trophies in Spain, including two La Liga titles and four UEFA Champions Leagues, while being one of Real’s key players in most of these feats. However, he fell out of favor with manager Zinedine Zidane in the past couple of seasons, which ultimately led to his departure.