Balemate: Real Madrid block Welshman's China move
Gareth Bale's future was unclear on Monday after Real Madrid stymied his proposed move to Jiangsu Suning in China. The 30-year-old Welshman was poised to leave the Santiago Bernabeu for a 1 million euro a week deal at the Super League club.
The transfer appeared to solve the spiralling crisis since Zinedine Zidane's reappointment as first team coach towards the end of last season. He has made no secret of his desire to dispense with Bale's services.
Following a friendly against Arsenal, Zidane said it would be best if Bale left soon.
Bale's agent branded the comments disrespectful towards a player who helped the side to a Spanish league title and four Champions League crowns since arriving from Tottenham Hotspur in 2013.
However Real have since acquired new stars with the arrival of Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Eder Militao, Ferland Mendy and Rodrygo for more than 300 million euros.
With the transfer window closing on Wednesday in China, Jiangsu Suning chose to elude the Madrid maelstrom.
They signed the Croatian striker Ivan Santini from the Belgian club Anderlecht. "He will greatly enrich the team's offensive tactics in the Chinese Super League," said a club statement.