Atletico Madrid midfielder Tiago claims to have turned down ’a great offer’ from Chelsea to return to Stamford Bridge.
With his previous contract at Vicente Calderon expiring at the end of the 2013/14 campaign, the former Portugal international became a free agent.
Various options were put to him, including the chance to head back to the Premier League.
”At the end of last season, I received a great offer (from Chelsea) and it made me think about making a change. But I realised that the most important thing was to feel important at a club.”
Tiago spent one season on the books at Chelsea in 2004/05, with Jose Mourinho snapping him up from Benfica.
He has since gone on to turn out for Lyon and Juventus before arriving in Madrid, initially on loan, in January 2010.
Tiago has enjoyed considerable success in Spain, including La Liga title joy, and admits he found it difficult to tear himself away as he mulled over his future – with Chelsea snubbed in favour of a new two-year deal at Atletico.
He told AS: ”The summer was very difficult.
”I want to explain to the fans what happened but there are some things I cannot explain because they are not important.
”At the end of last season, I received a great offer (from Chelsea) and it made me think about making a change.
”But I realised that the most important thing was to feel important at a club.
”I spoke to Cholo (Diego Simeone) and he told me he wanted me in the squad in the next training session.
”From then, I could only think of rejoining Atletico and wearing this shirt again.
”I am happy and grateful to everyone and to the club for having me back. I will give everything on the pitch to return their efforts.”