Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren has admitted that he considered a summer move to both AC Milan and Roma.
Leo Duarte ended up being the only reinforcement that Milan brought in at centre-back, signing for €11million from Flamengo and becoming the fifth summer signing in the process.
Despite his arrival, reports from TMW (via MilanNews.it) not long after stated that Mateo Musacchio could be sold if an offer of €18million arrives to help Milan recoup a capital gain.
However, his €4m-a-year salary – plus the transfer fee involved for a 30-year-old – made it a costly operation and he did not end up joining.
Now, Lovren has spoken out about the speculation surrounding his future, admitting he considered a move to Milan.
“Yes, I did consider the move, I knew I gave my best for Liverpool and won the Champions League, and I am not kind of player that likes to be benched and earn money,” the defender told Sportske Novosti, via Football Italia.
“Yes, some people around me advised me ‘what do you care, you are in big club, shut up and take the money’, but I am not happy sitting on the bench.
“Milan contacted me, but Roma was most persistent, but the negotiations didn’t go well. I don’t want to go somewhere and prove someone who I am and how do I play and am I ready or not.
“I am a professional, I have won the Champions League, won a World Cup silver medal, I achieved big things in football and don’t deserve to go anywhere on loan and to have someone checking me and my quality.
“I feel very happy because all the time I felt Liverpool was by me, and I respect that a lot. Klopp told me: ‘Listen, buddy, you are top-class player, we will not let you go on loan. We need you’.
“When he told me that, it was unclear to me because I know currently I am in worst position of all centre-backs in the team.
“But there will be a lot of matches, some injuries are possible too. I wanted to leave, it didn’t happen, I was told Liverpool needs me and I accepted that. It was not meant to be for me to leave.
“I feel I am in my prime age, in great shape, mentally ready and you can’t buy experience. Not many players have played in the World Cup final and Champions League final as me.
“That is why Liverpool wouldn’t let me go on loan. You have to pay to get quality and not go somewhere and prove something to someone.
“I feel relief after transfer window is closed. I got tired of reading and listening every day about me leaving or staying in Liverpool. Everyone wrote ‘Dejan is here, Dejan is there’, and knew nothing!
“It annoyed me, I got headache because of it throughout the summer. I didn’t want to force my way out from Liverpool. Two years ago I signed four-year contract, enjoyed every moment in Liverpool, achieved big things and that could not be possible had I not been in such big club as Liverpool.”
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