Welsh football star Gareth Bale was the only Real Madrid player to refuse a salary cut due to the pandemic stoppage, media reported Saturday.
According to Spanish national radio broadcaster Cadena SER, when competitions around the world were suspended earlier this year, Real Madrid was among the first clubs to propose a pay cut to players. The squad refused at first, but after players from Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and many other European clubs agreed to shrink their salaries, Real Madrid players agreed the pay cut, the radio station reported. Only Bale stood by his salary demands and refused to budge on a wage cut.
According to Cadena SER, it is unclear whether Bale’s inflexibility can be chalked up to his desire to leave the club. By the onset of the pandemic, Bale had barely seen any playing time throughout the season and his relationship with coach Zinedine Zidane had deteriorated.
Bale has since returned to Tottenham on loan from Real Madrid with option to buy at the end of the season.
Bale became the most expensive footballer in 2013 when he moved from Tottenham to the Spanish capital. He has since won four European Champions League trophies, scoring in two finals, as well as two La Liga and one Copa Del Rey. He scored over 100 goals as part of the stellar attacking trio with Portuguese icon Cristiano Ronaldo and Frenchman Karim Benzema.