Eight days ago, Real Madrid constructed a stage for the grand unveiling of Gareth Bale. After months of rumors and negotiating with Spurs, anonymous sources told overeager journalists that the deal was finally done and it was for a world record fee. But a little over a week later and with the transfer deadline approaching, the deal still hasn't been officially finalized and it might not even be for a record fee anymore.
By all accounts, the transfer will still go through before Monday's deadline, but in the meantime, Real Madrid have a match to play against Athletic Bilbao and that means the lonely stage at the Santiago Bernabeu had to be taken down — if only temporarily. Once the match concludes it will reportedly go right back up for Bale's deadline day arrival (as long as Cristiano Ronaldo doesn't sabotage it to prevent the Welshman from stealing his spotlight).
There's a valuable lesson in all of this for everyone about not counting your chickens before they hatch. Especially when you're getting your eggs from Daniel Levy.