Real Madrid turned down an offer worth €100million (£89m) from a Premier League club for Gareth Bale last summer, their former president Ramon Calderon claims.
The Welsh winger's time at the Santiago Bernabeu looks to be coming to an unsavoury end as he explained in his latest interview how Madrid were making it "very difficult" for him to leave.
He came close to moving on last July to Chinese Super League side Jiangsu Suning until Madrid scrapped the deal late in the negotiations.
Now Calderon has suggested Madrid also had an offer on the table from England but turned it down as they wanted to keep Bale on their books.
"I know in the last day of the transfer window last year there was an offer from the Premier League," Calderon told talkSPORT .
"They offered €100m and Real Madrid turned down that offer because they thought Bale would be a player in their side."
Man Utd have been linked with Bale previously, though Calderon insisted he was not able to reveal the identity of the bidders.
"I'm not allowed to say the name, though I do know the name of the club," he continued. "I think at the end there was a disagreement as Madrid decided not to sell the player, because they thought he was a player who could be used and be in the starting line-up."
Bale went on to make 20 appearances over the course of the decision despite boss Zinedine Zidane admitted prior to the campaign it "would be best" for the ex-Tottenham star to leave.
After working his way back into Zidane's good books though Bale soon found himself outcasted again following the break in the season.
He featured just twice after the restart and more attention was given to his fooling around on the subs bench.
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Speaking while on international duty with Wales this week, Bale told Sky Sports: "I tried to leave last year but they [Real Madrid] blocked everything at the last second.
"It was a project I was excited for last year but it didn't materialise. And there have been other instances but the club won't allow it or something, so it's up to the club."
He added that he would be open to a return to the Premier League if the opportunity arose, but his wages appear to be the biggest obstacle.
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The 31-year-old still has two years left to run on his contract worth more than £15m a year after tax.
Calderon added: "I think the player neither wants to leave nor to reduce his salary. It is true his salary is very high, but in 2016 the club decided to increase his salary.
"It is difficult for any club to pay that salary, especially knowing the situation of football nowadays."
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