Payet: I don't have to justify myself to West Ham
Dimitri Payet says he does not need to justify his actions following his acrimonious transfer from West Ham to Marseille.
The France international completed a £25million return to the Ligue 1 club on Sunday, with West Ham co-chairman David Sullivan slamming the player's attitude after he was made to train with the Under-23 side while attempting to force through a move.
Fans also vented their fury on social media when the playmaker tweeted a picture of the private plane he was using to travel to France to finalise the transfer, while others have been left further aggrieved by the club's decision to offer to exchange any replica shirts printed with Payet's name and number, but only if an additional £25 fee is paid.
The 29-year-old insists he holds the West Ham faithful in high regard, but maintains he does not need to explain himself to anyone at London Stadium.
"I didn't feel too good at West Ham; I needed a return to my roots," he told a news conference on Tuesday, in which he was officially presented as a Marseille player.
"Slaven Bilic has his opinion, but I don't have to justify my behaviour. I spoke with him. I don't want to talk about this at the moment.
"I had an exceptional year at West Ham. I keep an excellent memory of the supporters."
— Olympique Marseille (@OM_Officiel) January 30, 2017
Payet says he turned down offers from other clubs in order to return to Stade Velodrome and is excited at the prospect of a new project under Jacques-Henri Eyraud, who became president following Frank McCourt's takeover of the club.
"It's what I wanted. I want to thank the president, the sporting director, my agent and the coach for allowing this return to Marseille," he said.
"Other clubs were interested but my choice was clear. I wanted to be a part of the project that is starting.
"It's happened at a time when France was missing me.
"Returning to OM is a personal choice that I've taken. I spoke with the current players and they were happy with my return to the club."
Payet said the news that France team-mate Patrice Evra has signed for Marseille from Juventus came as a bonus.
"The arrival of Patrice Evra was a nice surprise. I'd made my decision before I knew about that," he added.