Gareth Bale says he always thought he could return to Tottenham Hot Spurs and immediately targeted winning multiple trophies after sealing an emotional return to the club on Saturday.
Seven years after leaving Spurs in a world-record £85 million deal for Real Madrid, Bale returned to north London on a season-long loan, thought to include the option of a second year which would take to him to end of his Real Madrid contract.
By Tony Mogan and Dan Kilpatrick
Gareth Bale has completed his sensational return to Tottenham with Spurs releasing first pictures of the Welshman back in club colours.
Bale arrives back in north London on a loan deal from Real Madrid. We understands Bale’s loan deal will cost under £15million in total with Madrid subsidising the majority of his reported £600,00-a-week salary.
Bale will wear the No 9 shirt, previously worn by the likes of Paul Gascoigne, Jimmy Greaves, Dimitar Berbatov and Martin Chivers.
“It’s nice to be back, it’s such a special club to me, it’s where I made my name,” Bale said. “What an amazing club, amazing fans; it’s just incredible to be back.
“Hopefully now I can get some match fitness, get underway, help the team and hopefully win trophies.”
Bale continued: “It’s such a special club; I always thought when I did leave that one day I would love to come back. The opportunity has now arisen and I feel that it’s a good fit, a good time for me.”I’m hungry, motivated; I want to do well for the team and I can’t wait to get started.”
The 31-year-old Welshman won four Champions League titles and two La Ligas in the Spanish capital, while Spurs remain without a trophy since winning the League Cup in Bale’s second season of his first spell.
He promised to bring experience of winning silverware back to the club and insisted he was still “hungry and motivated” after his commitment to the game was questioned during his final two years with Los Blancos.
“It’s nice to be back,” Bale said. “It’s such a special club to me. It’s where I made my name and what an amazing club, amazing fans. Just incredible to be back and hopefully now I can get some match fitness, get underway, really help the team and hopefully win some trophies.
“I always thought that when I did leave that one day I would love to come back and the opportunity now has arisen. I feel like it’s a good fit. It’s a good time for me. I’m hungry, I’m motivated, I want to do well for the team and I can’t wait to get started.
“By going to Madrid and winning trophies and going far with the Welsh national team, I feel like I have that winning mentality [of] how to win trophies.
“You don’t realise until you’re there, in those situations, in finals, how to deal with the situation, the nerves, the pressure. That all goes with experience.
“Hopefully I can bring that to the dressing room, bring bit more belief to everybody that we can win a trophy. The target is to do that this season.
“Not just to win one but to be fighting on every front possible. I want to bring that mentality back to Tottenham.
“I was speaking with the chairman [Daniel Levy] before,” Bale added in an interview with Spurs’ website.
“Obviously we were speaking about the past and what we did to get the club to the next level.
“Since I’ve left the club has been building and growing and the stadium is incredible, the training ground has got even better since I was here last. So it’s an exciting time for everybody here.
“The club continues to progress every year which is great and I want to contribute to that again and try to get us to the next level which is winning a trophy. I know i keep saying it but it’s such an important thing for this club to win trophies and that’s what we all want to do as players – win trophies in our careers.
“And to be doing it at Tottenham now would be a dream come true.”
Spurs also announced the signing of Spain left-back Sergio Reguilon in a deal worth around £25million. The 23-year-old has signed a five-year deal, which is thought to include the option for Real to buy him back for a 50 percent premium in future and have first refusal if Spurs accept any bids from other clubs.
“He’s an exciting young player, he’s an exciting young left-back, very energetic, loves attacking and a great delivery,” Bale said of Reguilon, who won the Europa League while on loan at Sevilla last month. “He’s a great signing and a great addition to the squad and I think everyone will enjoy watching him.”