Bale could be the man who ends United's unbeaten league start to the season when the Red Devils travel to White Hart Lane.
Fergie said: "We tried to sign him as a 16-or 17-year-old boy. But it never got to the last stage.
"They must have alerted Tottenham - we made a good offer but they turned it down.
"Bale has tremendous speed and is a great crosser of the ball.
"He's made an exciting contribution this season."