Paulo Dybala says he never wanted to leave Juventus despite being heavily linked with Manchester United and Tottenham this summer.
The Argentina international reportedly rejected a move to Old Trafford in the final days of the Premier League transfer window, before a proposed switch to Tottenham (opens in new tab) collapsed over complications to do with the player’s image rights.
Dybala initially began the season out of the Juventus (opens in new tab) team but has forced his way into the starting XI of late.
The forward scored his first goal of the season on Sunday, as Maurizio Sarri’s side beat Inter (opens in new tab) 2-1 to climb above the Nerazzurri and into top spot in Serie A.
And Dybala insists he always wanted to remain at the Allianz Stadium ahead of 2019/20 despite interest from the two Premier League sides.
“It wasn’t an easy summer,” he told Corriere della Sera (opens in new tab). “Hearing your name linked to every team and every place, where you don’t want to go, isn’t a nice thing.
“But this is football, even if before the transfer window opened I said: ‘I want to stay here’. I think it was more important to let [my performances on] the pitch do the talking, even if until the last day no one knew what would happen.
“I wanted to stay, I wanted to play here and continue my career at Juve. I think I can still give a lot and I showed a glimpse of that against Inter.
“I feel less weight on my shoulders and very calm mentally. I was convinced that with Sarri, I’d start to have fun, work and prove what I’m worth. And that’s what I’m trying to do. Sarri and [Max] Allegri have different ways of playing, and it shows.”
Juventus will host Bologna when Serie A returns after the international break, before a Champions League clash with Lokomotiv Moscow.
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Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).
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