Gareth Bale
Bale joined Tottenham from Southampton in 2007.

Southampton could be left rueing the decision to remove a sell on clause from the agreement to sell Gareth Bale to Tottenham Hotspur, should the Wales international join Real Madrid for £85m.

Saints had originally inserted a sell-on clause between 15% and 25% in the agreement to sell Bale to Spurs in 2007 for £5m, which was set to rise to £10m including add-ons.

But with the south coast club on the brink of financial ruin in 2008 - prior to going into administration the following year - IBTimes UK understands former chairman Rupert Lowe wrote off the clause instead accepting a settlement payment of between £1.5 and £3m plus Tottenham youth goalkeeper Tommy Forecast.

Madrid are understood to have submitted an offer worth £85m for Bale meaning Southampton have potentially missed out on a windfall of as much as £21.25m. Forecast was released this summer after loan spells at Thurrock and Bromley.

However, Fifa rules state that clubs are entitled to a solidarity contribution fee for every year the player was registered with them between his 12th and 23rd birthday. Bale signed with Southampton at 15 years old and departed for White Hart Lane just before he turned 18.

Therefore, Southampton are entitled to in the region of 1.25% of Bale's future sell on fees, meaning an £85m move to the Spanish capital would see them recoup £1.06m from the deal.

Bale became the second youngster player to ever play for Southampton when he made his debut in 2006 and has grown into one of the most feared players in world football.

Since being brought out of administration in 2009 after being purchased by the Liebherr family, Southampton won promotion back to the Premier League and finished 14th in their first campaign back in the top flight for seven years last season.