Jose Mourinho's latest comments about Gareth Bale will either excite or frustrate Manchester United fans
Mind games or an active interest from the Manchester United manager?
As Manchester United get set to meet Real Madrid in the Super Cup, Jose Mourinho has done his very best to increase the pressure on Zinedine Zidane by discussing the idea of Gareth Bale moving to Old Trafford.
With the two sides meeting in Skopje, Mourinho's men will face the ultimate test of their European credentials when they take on the back-to-back Champions League winners.
Bale's injury problems have meant that the former Spurs player hasn't always been a regular starter at the Bernabéu and in his pre-match press conference, Mourinho has said that in the event that Bale doesn't start in Macedonia, he's willing to 'fight' for the Welshman's signature.
"If he’s playing tomorrow, no I wouldn’t think of that. If he plays tomorrow it is be because he’s in the coach’s plans and the club’s plan and his own plan is to continue at Real Madrid and I wouldn't think about doing it. If he is not in the club’s plans and it's true what you write, that with the arrival of another player would mean he was on his way out, I will try to be waiting for him on the other side and fight with other coaches that are hoping for him. But if he plays tomorrow, that is the best evidence that he is going to continue," said Mourinho.
Granted, this effort is most likely a thinly-veiled effort from the Manchester United manager to goad Zidane into starting him - especially when combined with the recent report that Kylian Mbappé is content to stay with Monaco for another season. If that's true, then Bale won't be going anywhere.
This being said, we're curious to see if Zidane, Mourinho or Bale have anything to say about Manchester United's interest - especially if he doesn't make the starting XI for Real Madrid against the Europa League winners.