London (AFP) – Tottenham announced the signing of left-back Sergio Reguilon from Real Madrid on Thursday as talks continued between the two clubs over Gareth Bale’s return to the Premier League.
Reguilon heads to London for a reported fee of 30 million euros ($35 million, £27 million) plus five million more in add-ons after starring while on loan for Europa League winners Sevilla last season.
Madrid, though, will reportedly retain a buy-back option on the 23-year-old for the next two seasons for 40 million euros.
“We are delighted to announce the signing of Sergio Reguilon from Real Madrid,” Tottenham said in a statement.
“The 23-year-old left-back has signed a contract with the club until 2025 and will wear the number three shirt.”
Manchester United were also interested in Reguilon, who played in Sevilla’s 2-1 Europa League semi-final win over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men last month, but were less open to Real’s requirement for a buy-back clause.
After an impressive start to his Madrid career under former coaches Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari, Zinedine Zidane’s return to the Santiago Bernabeu saw Reguilon slip down the pecking order as veteran vice-captain Marcelo regained his place before the Spanish giants splashed 48 million euros on Ferland Mendy last year.
However, Reguilon, who made his debut for Spain earlier this month, is still highly regarded in Madrid, which is why they sought a deal to be able to bring him back to the club once Marcelo, 32, departs.
Bale arrived at Tottenham’s training ground on Friday after the clubs reportedly agreed to a season-long loan deal with Madrid still paying half of his salary.
The Welshman left Tottenham to join Madrid for a then world-record £85 million ($132 million, 100 million euros) fee in 2013.
Bale has won four Champions League and two La Liga titles over the past seven years, but has fallen out of favour with Zidane in recent seasons.
He started just one match when the 2019/20 season resumed after the coronavirus hiatus and caused a stir with his behaviour while he watched on in the stands.
Bale almost joined Chinese Super League club Jiangsu Suning last year before Madrid pulled the plug on the deal and he has accused the club of making it “very difficult” to leave.
Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho, who left Madrid just months before Bale arrived in Spain, said on Wednesday he had wanted to sign him during his spell as Real boss.
Mourinho’s men are badly in need of a lift in the closing weeks of the transfer window after losing their opening game of the Premier League season 1-0 at home to Everton.
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