Mancini plays down Bale talk

Boss thinks winger will not leave Tottenham

Mancini not interested in Bale

Gareth Bale: Reports of a move to Manchester City have been played down by Roberto Mancini

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has praised Tottenham winger Gareth Bale, but has played down talk of a summer swoop for the Wales star.

Reports in the media on Friday had suggested City were preparing a player-plus-cash deal for the former Southampton youngster.

As well as offering a significant hike in Bale's wages, the reports also suggested the deal would involve on-loan striker Emmanuel Adebayor making his move to White Hart Lane permanent.

Dutch midfielder Nigel De Jong and former Middlesbrough winger Adam Johnson were also mentioned as makeweights in any move.

When quizzed on a possible swoop for Bale, City boss Mancini confirmed he was an admirer of the 22-year-old's abilities but conceded it was unlikely he would leave North London in the summer.

"Gareth Bale is a fantastic player," said the Italian.

Big team

"But I don't think he will leave a big team like Tottenham."

Mancini also confirmed he had spoken to City's wealthy owners about his summer transfer targets.

However, with City currently leading the table on goal difference with two games remaining, Mancini confirmed any transfer plans were now on hold with the destiny of the title still so finely balanced.

"We talked about this some weeks ago," he added. "But now our focus has to be on the next two games."