Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane says Gareth Bale will not leave the club in January despite leaving the Wales forward out of his latest squad.
Bale, 30, was omitted from the 19-man Real squad that will face local rivals Atletico Madrid tomorrow.
Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy reportedly travelled to Madrid for talks with Real president Florentino Perez over a late move for Bale.
“I don’t contemplate the possibility of his departure,” Zidane said today.
Prior to the squad announcement, he added: “He’s with us and I’m going to count on him. We’re all here to play tomorrow and he has to be ready.”
The Welshman, who joined Real from Tottenham in 2013 for a then world-record £85.3m fee and has a contract until 2022, has scored twice in 12 La Liga appearances this season.
Bale’s agent Jonathan Barnett said it was “ridiculous” to suggest “one of the best players in the world” would leave Real on loan amid links to Tottenham earlier in the January transfer window, adding it was “unlikely” Bale would leave the Bernabeu this summer.
Speaking on Bale’s situation, BBC Sport’s European football expert Guillem Balague said: “Gareth has been injured but I feel he will be strong and ready for the last months of the season.
“He decided he wanted to leave at the end of this season. No offer has arrived at the moment. So it is even possible he would stay, which in the eyes of the club is not ideal.”