Charles De Ketelaere has admitted that it was the project that AC Milan pitched to him which attracted him to the club above all.
It was a happy end to a situation that dragged on for weeks in the end after Milan and Leeds United battled it out to sign the 21-year-old. Towards the end it became clear the playmaker only wanted to join Milan, and after long negotiations things eventually got done.
De Ketelaere’s agent Tom De Mul decided to lift the lid on the intricacies of the soap opera in an interview with HLN yesterday, revealing how many clubs wanted his client and why things became so difficult.
De Ketelaere did his unveiling press conference today during which he answered questions from the journalists who gathered at Milanello. He spoke about his first impressions, aims for the season and his favoured position, as well as revealing details of his conversations with Paolo Maldini.
“The last few weeks have been difficult. You know what happened, I have always expressed my desire to my agents to go to Milan. I had to give something up, but the most important thing for me was to get here,” he said.
What did Paolo Maldini tell you?
“For me it was an honour to have spoken with him. He is a legend of this club, but even now he has an important role. The Milan project was also fundamental in my choice, I was very attracted to the project,” he said (via MilanNews).
Did Belgium coach Roberto Martinez influence you in your choice?
“Absolutely not. He knew I would go to a great club where I could play continuously. I want to play as much as possible and show the coach that I deserve to be called up for the next World Cup.”