Real Madrid president not ruling out future sale of Gareth Bale

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez says his club received no offers for Gareth Bale this summer, while stopping short of ruling out a future sale of the Wales international.

Bale was linked with a move away from Madrid throughout the summer transfer window, with Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho making several public attempts to persuade the former Tottenham man to return to the Premier League.

Perez told "El Larguero" radio show that he remained "happy" to have Bale in the Madrid squad as he had not wanted to disrupt the team which won both the Champions League and La Liga last season.

"[Bale] is one of the best players and we are happy to have him in the squad," Perez said. "There were no offers. Mourinho spoke [about him] in a friendly tone. But not one offer was made. Unsellable are those who have been with Madrid this year.

"My idea after [the Champions League final in] Cardiff was that when things are going well it is best not to touch them. Aug. 31 came and [Bale] is still with us. Are you going to be with 'El Larguero' all your life? Nobody knows what will happen. He has won 11 trophies [in four years] and has been a key player."

While Madrid previously looked strong in their intention to keep Bale, this summer there appeared more chance of a move with pundits less supportive than before, and widespread reports that the club were hoping to use the money raised by a sale to sign Kylian Mbappe from Monaco.

Perez said it had become "fashionable" to criticise Bale, suggesting it was seen as an indirect way to attack him personally.

"Last year he had a serious injury, which was unfortunate," he said. "We hope to see again now the great Bale we saw in his first years here. It is the same injury, and affects his calf. I don't know why people get on Bale's back.

"It is fashionable to criticise Bale as a way of criticising the president. Every day somebody is having a go at me. Some people think Bale is more my player than Isco, and think they can damage me by saying Bale must be sold. I have signed them all, many like Isco and [Marco] Asensio too with more of an effort than with Bale."

Asked about a summer during which there was strong talk of Cristiano Ronaldo wanting to leave Madrid, Perez said he was still unsure exactly what was behind the reports but he believed assurances made recently as the forward was named UEFA Player of the Year for the 2016-17 season.

"A report came out in A Bola and I don't know what happened," he said. "Things went too far. He was annoyed by the tax issue. I don't believe [he wanted to leave]. He went to the Confederations Cup and then on holidays. I don't know what was going on with him, but I did not say anything to him.

"Cristiano will play on Wednesday in the Champions League and you just have to see the motivation with which he has begun the season.

"He has four years left on his contract. The other day he said he was happy at Madrid, that Madrid was the best club in the world. He has more individual prizes for being here, surrounded by this magnificent collection of players. This is his era. I believe he will win a fifth Ballon d'Or."

Perez dodged the question when asked if Ronaldo or his representatives had asked for a pay rise to help pay a tax bill which could reportedly reach €50 million.

"That's out of order," he said. "He is a great player, and I don't know what other people earn, or yourselves."

Perez said there had been some contact with Mbappe's family this summer before it was decided the youngster would join Paris Saint-Germain.

However, he said Mbappe's camp had not demanded the sale of Bale, Ronaldo or Karim Benzema in order to make the move.

"There was some contact, to talk," he said. "[Mbappe] chose to go to PSG because he was born in Paris, and that seems fine to me. I don't know if it was the right moment to bring him here and upset what we have. His father did not tell me that one of the 'BBC' would have to leave."

Perez also said that a new contract had been agreed with Isco, whose current deal ends next June.

"Isco has renewed his contract," he said. "We will announce it soon, in the coming days. We will announce all the new contracts."