Ian Rush sends message to Manchester United target Gareth Bale

by Leo Nieboer

Former Liverpool and Wales striker Ian Rush has sent a message to Gareth Bale amid speculation of a move to Manchester United.

Bale’s agent initially rubbished the move but reports of Zinedine Zidane needing to offload the Welshman to sign Kylian Mbappe from AS Monaco has blown the move open again. 

Jose Mourinho, speaking ahead of the UEFA Super Cup clash with Madrid, confirmed that Man United would fight for Bale if he wanted to leave the Bernabeu.

But Rush, reflecting on the potential move, noted that he should think carefully about the long term effects of returning to the Premier League.

“If he’s happy then ­Gareth should stay in Spain, 100 per cent,” he said.

“He has improved as a player. He’s got great players like Cristiano Ronaldo to keep ­learning from. There are not many better clubs in the world than Real Madrid.

“I know that if he decided to come to England he would have the choice of all the top clubs here. Manchester United,­Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool would all want him.

“There’s always a time and a place to come back but I don’t think it should be now. He is still relatively young.”

“The Premier League is so tough. There are no games in which you can switch on the cruise control. Real Madrid and Barcelona can rest players in certain games and still win. You can’t do that in England so the ­season is a real grind.

“Gareth is able to fine tune his game in Spain. He is rested at times but if he came back to England, say for ­Manchester United, he would be playing week-in, week-out.

“Also there’s every chance that Real Madrid, who have won the Champions League two seasons running, will at least reach the semi-finals and final again. You can’t say that with any certainty about any English club Gareth joins.”

This saga, with the transfer window entering its latter stages, feels somewhat on a knife edge. There is still plenty that remains very much up in the air.

Whether Madrid’s interest in Mbappe is genuine, for example, is still unknown, as is how Bale – the main protagonist – feels about a move away, or whether he would consider remaining at the Bernabeu.

But Mourinho’s position is clear: if Bale wants a move, United will battle to sign him.

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