have an unlimited transfer budget and refused to rule out signing the Welshman. However, since then, a more concerted effort has been invested into the pursuit of Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas, while Bale's move to Real Madrid instead inches ever closer. There's little questioning Bale would have been a terrific signing for United, and indeed, they almost signed the 24-year-old during his Southampton days. Since then, goals and awards, have flown in and the attacker is today one of the transfer market's hottest commodities, commanding a market value of £100 million. And it is that valuation of the midfielder that makes a move to debt-laden United all the less likely. The most United have ever spent on any one player is the £30.75 million paid to Tottenham for Dimitar Berbatov in 2008, and so it would take a detachment from reality to envisage the English champions making such a big money move for Bale. Here then, we take a look at 5 alternatives for the double PFA Player of the Year.
Joseph is an accredited football journalist and has interviewed nearly all of the current 20 Barclay's Premier League managers. He is also a correspondent for Bleacher Report and has written for Caught Offside and Give Me Football.