Pedro Chirivella has explained why he decided to turn down the offer of a new contract at Liverpool to join Nantes.
It was reported in May that Chirivella was likely to leave Liverpool this summer in search of more regular first-team opportunities.
The Spaniard made just ten appearances in years five on Merseyside, making his debut as a Europa League substitute for Brendan Rodgers and being used more often in domestic cup competitions by Jurgen Klopp.
One of the club’s few one-time captains, Chirivella was described as “incredible” and “unbelievable” by former U23 head coach Neil Critchley for his professionalism and dedication.
He told new club Nantes of the process behind his decision.
“I knew FC Nantes before signing before signing for them,” he told the club’s official website.
“They are a very important club in France, with a great history.
“Coming to Nantes is a very good opportunity for me. It was not easy to have playing time at Liverpool and today I need to play.
“I don’t know the city yet but everyone has only said good things about it. I can’t wait to find out about it.”
Thank you for everything, always❤️ https://t.co/Ddtmw1JwhH
— Pedro Chirivella (@pedrochb97) June 12, 2020
Chirivella also paid tribute to Klopp, the manager having been “completely over the moon” with his performance as captain in the League Cup defeat to Aston Villa in December.
“I only have words of gratefulness,” he added. “He’s been very great to me, and I can only thank him.
“What you see on TV is what he is like in real life.
“I will tell my kids and my grandkids that I was trained by one of the best coaches in the history of football.
“It would be special if you can sing You’ll Never Walk Alone at the stadium! It’s a special song and after seven years at Liverpool, I feel it really deep inside.”