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Nainggolan: Southampton are my last choice

Cagliari midfielder Radja Nainggolan has revealed that Southampton want to sign him, but the Premier League club are his “last choice”.

The 25-year-old impressed for the Serie A outfit last season, making 34 of a possible 38 league appearances in midfield.

The Belgium international has reportedly attracted the interest of Inter and Napoli, but is not ruling out the prospect of staying at Cagliari.

Southampton have also offered him big money to lure him to England, but Nainggolan appears happy to pursue other options before deciding whether to accept the offer from Mauricio Pochettino’s side.

“I still remain focused for training, because we haven’t entered the transfer window yet, so I cannot talk much about it,” Nainggolan told Goal.

“I’m still a Cagliari player, whether I will stay or not depends on the club’s vision for the future. If Cagliari have a good plan for my career, of course I will stay.

“The situation is uncertain and everything can happen but I have to consider my future career as well.

“Honestly, Southampton gave me the biggest offer at the moment among the other clubs but I don’t play football for money. My priority is looking for a brighter future for my career and Southampton is my last choice.

“We will see later, it’s no problem for me to move to England for the sake of my career.”

Nainggolan also revealed that he nearly signed for Juventus last year, and that he would love to play for Barcelona at one stage of his career.

“I could have played for Juventus last year,” he said.

“However, I got many offers so it was quite hard for me to decide. In Spain, I like Barcelona, they play beautiful football.

“It’s hard for me to name a favourite team. In Italy, Juventus are the best team, they are in a different class now.

“Serie A is not good as three years ago, several teams are suffering financial problems, such as AC Milan, they built the team from zero, decided to change their policy and use youth players.

“(Lionel) Messi is my favourite player, although we play in a different position. I think all of the players in the world would be happy if they can play in a same team with him.”

Sun 23 June, 2013
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