Spanish publication AS is reporting that Real Madrid will again be looking to offload Gareth Bale this summer.
It's no great surprise to hear this, and it's a pretty easy assumption to make.
While Bale hasn't done a great deal wrong in his time at Madrid (I'm sure some will disagree with that), the fact remains he is one of their biggest earners, and his returns are continually dwindling.
Gareth Bale Is Fast Becoming A Dwindling Asset For Madrid
Real won't be commanding much of a fee for him, if any at all. Bale is 30 now, will expect big wages, and has a dodgy injury record. Who in their right mind will pay a big transfer fee, and large wages for that?
Then there is his keenness to represent his country, Wales, something that has never gone down well in the Spanish capital. Wales are currently 100/1 to win the rescheduled Euro 2020 with Betfair.
Unlike Ryan Giggs, a man who dodged more friendlies than he has angry husbands, Bale continually turns out for his country.
If Bale was Spanish, it's fair to assume his continued presence on the international scene wouldn't be treated with such contempt.
The continued criticism is almost patronising to Wales. It's like the Spanish media and Madrid fans look at it as only poor little Wales, and why would Bale want to play for them, when he is at a club like Madrid.
They never seem to have accepted that as a proud Welshman, Bale wants to play for his country.
So could this desire to play for his country also hinder Bale if wants to move a big club? I've a feeling it will.
Will Bale Have To Choose Between Club And Country?
Forgetting what Real want for a moment, and looking at it from Bale's perspective, might he have to consider calling time on his Wales career if he wants to join any of Europe's elite clubs who might be willing to take a chance on him?
If a club like Bayern or PSG, even Arsenal or Tottenham, etc, were to come in for him, they might expect his 100% focus to them alone, in return for the sort of wages Bale will want. That could mean an end to his Wales career.
This could play a big part in Bale's desire to stay at Madrid. He doesn't seem to care any more what they think if he goes to play international football. That ship has long since sailed. Bale proved this when he famously and willingly held up that flag.
The feeling from the Welshman himself is that he has done more than enough for Madrid. And despite not being able to fill the void left by Ronaldo, he has achieved enough to demand more respect.
Judging Bale Against Ronaldo Is Harsh
Living up to Ronaldo's incredibly high standards seems to be what was expected of Bale, which is very unfair. Bale is a different person and player. He has contributed enough to Madrid during his time there, scoring big and important goals.
His time may well be coming to an end at Madrid though. Despite what he wants, or what he feels he deserves, time waits for no man. And the facts are that Bale is no more the treasured goods he once was.
For this reason, it could be the case that he will probably have to sacrifice either his big club status, or his international career.