The Welsh international confirmed his return to Tottenham Hotspur over the summer on loan from Real Madrid, where he spent seven years after signing for the club in 2013.
Former Everton defender Joleon Lescott has initiated a swap where Gareth Bale could have switched to the blues instead of Leighton Baines.
Former Everton defender Joleon Lescott recalled a conversation he had had with Leighton Baines about a possible swap deal in the past that could have been made for Gareth Bale.
Lescott spoke to Sky Sports and recalled a time when Bale was struggling with the Spurs in North London at the beginning of his term – the defender had to wait two years for his first involvement in a Premier League win, partly due to serious injuries.
However, the 31-year-old’s path could have been quite different.
Lescott said: “I remember the time when he [Bale] ended up losing his first 20 games or something like that!
But looking back on a 1-0 win for Everton at Tottenham 2008, the former Blues defender recalled an interaction he had with his teammate Baines.
The left-back came into play as a full-back in the 88th minute of the game, with Bale also coming off the bench earlier in the second half and after the final whistle, he had a conversation with the then Spurs manager, Harry Redknapp.
“He pulled Baines to one side and talked to him, so I asked, ‘What was going on?
“When I came in after Bainesy’s game, which I was very close to, we talked and Harry Redknapp wanted to swap them.
“He said they were interested in exchanging them for Bale.
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“One of the main reasons it didn’t happen was because Bale’s record was so bad and David Moyes didn’t want to swap.
Bale, of course, became an extremely important player for the Spurs in the years to come, before securing a big money move to Real Madrid in 2013.
Baines remained with Everton for the rest of his career and became an icon for the club before announcing his retirement from football this summer.