Sometimes headlines are ridiculous clickbait and sometimes they're ridiculous because the world is bonkers (insert your own recent political anecdote in here), but former Reading winger Stephen Hunt has revealed that Gareth Bale was discussed as part of a player exchange deal back in 2007/08.
Let's remember, in his first 12 months at White Hart Lane, the Welshman failed to be part of a winning side and flopped at left-back. Meanwhile, the Royals were an up-and-coming Premier League mainstay (until the last few weeks of their relegation campaign) and had Hunt running the show from left wing. Also, Bale cost £5 million and Reading had turned down £6m for Nicky Shorey in January '08, so the numbers do add up.
Anyway, Spurs wanted Hunt and, according to the man himself in his Sunday Independent column back in Ireland, this happened:
Yeah, lucky escape...