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Gameiro explains decision to reject Barcelona

New Atletico Madrid striker Kevin Gameiro says he rejected Barcelona because he would not have been a first-team regular at Camp Nou.

The 29-year-old joined Diego Simeone’s side from Sevilla on a four-year deal for a reported fee of €32million last week having been courted by Barca.

At his unveiling at the Vicente Calderon, Gameiro insisted Atletico were always his first choice and he has now gone in to greater detail on his decision.

Gameiro claims he would have been more likely to stay at Sevilla than move to Barca only to find himself fourth in line behind Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez.

“It was overwhelmingly a footballing decision,” he said to L’Equipe.

“I knew that if I went to Barcelona, I would be the fourth-choice attacker. My playing time would have diminished, I think.

“In fact, it was more likely that I would have stayed at Sevilla rather than going to Barcelona.

“Atletico Madrid are offering a very good project, notably with a new stadium in a year. Also, for three or four seasons, the team is not changing much. I was told that it was like a big family.”

Gameiro revealed he could have earned more money by leaving Spain, but had no plans to do so.

He continued: “My agents made me aware of more attractive offers on a financial level but I wanted to stay in Spain.

“I feel very good here, my family does too and LaLiga is one of the best leagues. Only Spanish teams have won the European trophies in the past three years.”

Sat 6 Aug, 2016
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