Gareth Bale's chances of moving to Manchester United this summer appear to be very remote.
The Welsh forward is out of favour at his club Real Madrid, despite having three-years remaining on his contract at the Bernabeu. Bale's been linked almost incessantly with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side over the past two-years. But speaking to Sky Sports at Royal Ascot, Bale's agent Jonathan Barnett revealed that chances of a move to Old Trafford are slim at best, "He could fit in, I think he'd do very well. He's still one of the best players in the world. The likelihood is very unlikely."
Zinedine Zidane returned as Real head coach in March of this year, with his office reportedly telling Bale at the time that he was not part of his plans. With talk of an exit in the air, Bale was denied giving the Bernabeu faithful a send-off in their final game of the season. The 29-year old was left on the bench, and walked straight down the tunnel at the final whistle. Speaking about the perceived snub in May, Zidane said, "I'm sorry he didn't get to play, but no-one knows what will happen.
"If I think a player doesn't fit in the team, I have to do what I think works best.
"No-one can change what Bale has done for the team, but as a coach I have to live in the present."
Barnett says there has been no successful peace talks since, "[His situation] obviously hasn't improved. I think Mr. Zidane has decided that he could probably do without him so we'll have to wait and see."
Given that Bale is unwilling to say goodbye to his €400,000-a-week wage packet, and still has three-years left on his contract, a loan move had seemed a way of appeasing all parties. But that's another notion shot-down by Barnet, "I think there's more chance of me winning at Ascot than him going out on loan. It's not going to happen. I don't think he wants to go out on loan. He's got a lovely life, home, everything in Spain.
"It would have to take something exceptional for him to leave, and I don't think loans are on the menu."
While Barnett hasn't ruled out the possibility of his client playing for Real Madrid again, his list of options elsewhere appear to be narrowing by the day even at this early stage of the transfer window.