Spurs should not be bullied into selling Gareth Bale this summer even if they receive a huge offer from Real Madrid, according to Paul Walsh.
Bale has attracted the attention of Real, Barcelona, and a host of other sides after firing in 28 goals for club and country this season.
Bigger clubs have come calling for Tottenham's top stars in recent years, with differing outcomes. Manchester United successfully prized Dimitar Berbatov away from White Hart Lane in 2008, but Spurs managed to hold on to Luka Modric - for a year at least - despite Chelsea's interest two summers ago.
Walsh, who played for Tottenham for four years, thinks chairman Daniel Levy could play hard-ball in his attempt to keep Bale just as he did with Modric, who was made to stay at White Hart Lane despite his attempt to push through a move to Chelsea.
"He has three years left on his contract so Tottenham are in a position where they can say, 'You're not going anywhere. We are going to keep you'," said Walsh, who was speaking at a Football Pools event in Frome, Somerset.
"Daniel Levy has been quite hard-nosed on a couple of other occasions in the past so I don't think Tottenham are just going to roll over.
"He didn't let Modric go that summer and that might be what they have to do with Bale."
Bale, who is odds-on favourite to be crowned PFA Player of the Year on Sunday, once again showed his worth last weekend when he helped inspire Spurs to a stunning comeback against Manchester City.
The Londoners went behind to Samir Nasri's goal, but Bale played in Clint Dempsey to equalise and then scored Tottenham's third after Jermain Defoe had put Spurs 2-1 ahead.
City were in control for most of the game but the three-goal salvo turned the contest on its head in a matter of minutes.
Still fifth in the table, Spurs cannot afford to take their foot off the accelerator in their last five games, but Walsh admits the manner of the win over last year's champions will give Andre Villas-Boas' squad a big psychological boost ahead of a tough run in.
"The players will be able to draw strength from it and belief from it," Walsh said.
"They will say, 'We won't give up because we know we can turn it around'. Because they have done it against Manchester City, it will be in the memory bank for when they need it and they will need to be strong mentality in the business end of the season.
"Fourth spot gets you into a competition and it gets you a big amount of money."
Like Bale, Jermain Defoe also returned from injury to star in the City win. Walsh thinks the striker, who missed the previous three games with a pelvis problem, should start Saturday's game away at Wigan ahead of Emmanuel Adebayor, who has drawn criticism for his performances in recent weeks.
"I think it will be Defoe who starts," he said. "Now you have a glad to be back, confident Defoe going into the Wigan game. That might be what Tottenham need."
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