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Manchester United: Jose Mourinho says signing Gareth Bale from Real Madrid is 'game over'

Gareth Bale helps Real Madrid beat Manchester United

Jose Mourinho says it is “game over” for Manchester United’s hopes of signing Wales international Gareth Bale from Real Madrid.

United boss Mourinho previously said he would “fight” to sign Bale if Madrid wanted to sell, but conceded it looked unlikely after the forward started the 2-1 Uefa Super Cup win over United.

“I think now everybody knows he is going to stay,” Mourinho said.

When asked if he had been told he could leave, Bale said: “Not that I know of.”

Madrid president Florentino Perez was later quoted by Spanish newspaper Marca as saying the Spanish champions were “not considering selling Bale”.

The Welshman added: “I’m just concentrating on my football and I’m not listening to anything. I’m not reading anything, although people tell me bits and bobs.

“I’m enjoying my football and playing as much as I can and winning trophies.”

Bale, 28, joined the Spanish giants for a world record fee of £85m from Premier League side Tottenham in 2013.

He committed his future to Madrid at the end of last season, saying he was happy to stay with the 12-time European champions.

Last October, he signed a new deal to stay at the Bernabeu until 2022.

But he made just 17 league starts for Zinedine Zidane’s side and has been linked with a move back to the Premier League.

Madrid are also reportedly keen on signing teenage Monaco forward Kylian Mbappe in a £160m deal.

But after Bale started the Skopje victory against the Red Devils, setting up the second goal for Isco, Mourinho told BT Sport: “Clearly the club want him, the manager wants him and he wants the club.

“So for me, game over, even before it started.”

Analysis

BBC Sport’s Simon Stone

Jose Mourinho has previously said that signing Bale is “mission impossible”. But if he’s available – and if Mbappe for instance comes into Madrid it may create a bit of uncertainty – Mourinho is pointing out to Real Madrid he’s interested.

But just as much, he is also telling Manchester United that if someone like Gareth Bale is on the market, he expects to be in there pitching for him.

‘I’ve never liked a group as much as I like them’

While United were outclassed by Spanish and European champions Madrid, Mourinho insists there were plenty of positives to take from the match going into the Premier League season.

The Red Devils, who finished 24 points adrift of champions Chelsea in sixth place last season, start the new campaign when they host West Ham United at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Despite a poor league performance, United won the Europa League and EFL Cup in Mourinho’s first season in charge.

“I am so happy to be manager of these guys and told them I have never had a group I like as much as I like them,” said the former Chelsea, Real Madrid, Inter Milan and Porto manager.

“I am going to fight with them all the way.

“I am happy because although we lost a game, lost a cup, we did not lose the season. We are better now than we were last season when we won the Europa League.”

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