Let’s be honest, most polls on most blogs are used to generate clicks and get the comments section to go back and forth. So, let’s not hide that fact. We are all adults. So, in that vein, let’s start a new tradition: the pie in the sky poll.
With this, we do nothing but vote on something that is so unlikely to happen that we can just bask in its absurdity/unlikeliness/other-worldliness. Here we can have hypothetical discussions on team building and philosophies or what not, safe in the knowledge that neither party can ever be proven wrong – as is the case with most polls, really.
We begin with a simple question: Should Inter Milan attempt to sign Gareth Bale?
Ok, I’ll admit, it’s not the most Pie in the Sky poll to start with. Bale’s ongoing saga at Real Madrid has been chronicled ad nauseum. His move to Jiangsu Suning in China fell through at the last minute. Depending on which account you believe, that was because Bale’s family didn’t want to leave European (why would he then agree to the £1 million a week deal?) or because Florentino Perez was unwilling to let him leave on a free transfer (not really free, though, is it, Florentino? You’d be dumping the salary).
(the reason the Chinese club didn’t offer a transfer fee is because China has a 100% tax on foreign transfers, meaning the club pays double. Oh, and they were willing to sink £52 million a year to the player, which is kind of a fee)
The Chinese transfer window shut last week, so any move to the far east is now out of the window for the time being.
That leaves Bale and Real with three options: Stay at Madrid and cash in on the £600,000 a week salary, stick out the final three years of his deal, fight for some game time and play minimal football – unless Zidane leaves again; Move back to the Premier League permanently, the only league in the world who could get close to his salary, though he’d still be taking a major discount; go out on loan to one of Europe’s other top leagues, play more football, but perhaps play less golf or enjoy the lifestyle less.
As you’re all likely aware, Jiangsu’s owner, Zhag Jindong, also owns Inter, though it’s really the Suning Holding Company. That means he’s at least signed off on a mega-money Bale deal at some point, and likely exchanged some communication – even through intermediaries – with Bale’s influential agent Jonathan Barnett.
So, what say you? How about a deal that brings Bale in on loan, perhaps with an option to buy, and in this hypothetical world, what he slots into the second striker option in Antonio Conte’s system? Could it be a way to make nice with Conte after the Lukaku debacle?