Tottenham Hotspur launched a loan move for Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale, according to BBC Sport journalist Guillem Balague.
Chairman Daniel Levy, per the report, attempted to bring the Wales international back to the club where he made his name.
Bale left Spurs in 2013, joining Real in a then-world record deal worth £85million.
He has won four Champions League titles in Spain but has endured a difficult season at the Santiago Bernabeu and has routinely been booed by his own supporters.
Real, of course, were eliminated from Europe’s premier club competition last week, as they were thumped 4-1 by Ajax in Spain.
They are also effectively out of the running in the Liga title race and Balague claims that Spurs wanted to capitalise by launching a loan bid for Bale.
However, so low was the proposal that it never actually reached Real, as Levy was hopeful that his current would subsidise the majority of his reported £650,000-per-week wages.
This is an opportunistic move that could well have been a masterstroke.
Bale was an icon at Spurs, making his breakthrough at the club and becoming a genuinely world-class player in north London.
A return is a romantic notion that fans continue to dream of but it is perhaps unlikely to ever come to fruition.
Such are his wages, Real would have to keep paying him, but it cannot hurt to ask the question.
Levy, it seems, did just that.
Real may well have said yes, just to help Bale avoid the prospect of yet more criticism in Madrid; that they didn’t is nobody’s fault, the chairman made the only bid that was possible for Spurs from a financial perspective.