Gareth Bale: The latest Briton to play for Real Madrid

Gareth Bale has joined Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur. Photo: EMPICS Sport

Gareth Bale is one medical examination away from completing his transfer from Tottenham Hotspur to Real Madrid for what is expected to be a world record fee.

Although he will become the first Welshman to play for the famous club, Bale will follow in the footsteps of several Britons who have made the move to the Bernabeu, including:

  • David Beckham
David Beckham applauds the fans at Highbury after Arsenal's 2006 game with Real. Credit: Neal Simpson/EMPICS Sport

The former England captain is probably Britain's most famous export to Madrid.

He left Manchester United and signed for Real Madrid in 2003 for £25 million and joined a star-studded squad that included Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Ronaldo, Roberto Carlos and Iker Casillas.

Beckham stayed at Real Madrid until 2007 when he joined Los Angeles Galaxy.

  • Steve McManaman
McManaman celebrates scoring in the Champions League final against Valencia. Credit: Tony Marshall/EMPICS Sport

The Liverpool winger, once dubbed a 'Spice Boy' by the British press because of his apparent off-field behaviour, joined Los Blancos in 1999 for a free transfer.

His greatest moment as a Real Madrid player came in the 2000 UEFA Champions League final against Valencia.

McManaman scored a stunning volley in a 3-0 win against the fellow Spanish side and he became the first Englishman to win Europe's top cup competition with a foreign team.

  • Laurie Cunningham
Laurie Cunningham tragically died in a 1989 car crash. Credit: Peter Robinson/EMPICS Sport

The winger enjoyed a varied career having played for teams including West Bromwich Albion, Manchester United, Marseille, Leicester City and Rayo Vallecano.

Cunningham became the first Englishman to play for Real Madrid when he joined them in 1979 for £950,000 and he helped them lift the league and cup double.

In 1989, at the age of 33, he was killed in a car crash in Madrid, leaving behind his wife and son.

  • Jonathan Woodgate
Jonathan Woodgate did not enjoy the best start to his Real Madrid career. Credit: Mike Egerton/EMPICS Sport

Despite a series of injuries at Newcastle United, Real Madrid signed the central defender for over £13 million in 2004.

Woodgate suffered an awful debut for the Spanish club, scoring an own goal and then being sent off against Athletic Bilbao.

He only went on to play 14 times for Real Madrid before being loaned to Middlesbrough - where he still plays now.

  • Michael Owen
David Beckham congratulates Michael Owen after he scored against Real Betis. Credit: Adam Davy/EMPICS Sport

The former England striker and winner of the prestigious Ballon d'Or joined international teammate David Beckham and a host of superstars at Real Madrid in 2004.

Liverpool received £8 million plus midfielder Antonio Nunez for Owen, who only spent a season at the Bernabeu before being transferred to Newcastle United.

The striker scored 13 goals in his solitary season at Madrid with one of them coming in a 4-2 El Clasico victory over rivals Barcelona.

  • John Fox Watson

Watson is the only ever Scottish footballer to play for Real Madrid.

However, his career at Los Blancos was far from an illustrious one - he only made one appearance in a 3-1 defeat to Celta Vigo.

He also played for Fulham, Crystal Palace and Bury during his playing career.