Everton midfielder, James Rodriguez has come out to say that he almost joined Atletico Madrid from Real Madrid. James recently revealed that he even held talks with Diego Simeone because he knew no opportunity was forthcoming under Zidane.
According to him, it was almost a done deal, but Real Madrid prevented it, so he opted for Everton for guaranteed playtime.
He added that if Carlo Ancelotti was not in charge of the Toffees, he doesn’t feel he would’ve joined the club.
His words, “It was nearly a done deal to go to Atletico, I spoke with Simeone, he said I could be important, and [Real] didn’t let me go,”
“[Real president] Florentino Perez knew that with Zidane that I wouldn’t play much. It was a bad year, I wanted to come to Everton to play and show what I can do.”
“I’ll say it with all sincerity that if Carlo weren’t here, I wouldn’t have come.”
“I [have] started to get to know the club, how they work, how they want to work, win things, play in Europe. The fact that Carlo is here was fundamental to me coming, where I am learning every day.”
On the end of the season, “In these remaining 10 [league] matches, I want to perform well,” he said. “I had some physical problems for a month, but I have overcome them and it’s my goal to get a European spot, hopefully in Champions League.”
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