Jean Michael Seri has spoken of his anger at the Nice board, claiming he “exploded” when informed his proposed move to Barcelona had broken down.
The 26-year-old held talks with Barca and was understood to be on the verge of a €40m move to Camp Nou before the LaLiga giants pulled the plug last week.
Nice president Jean Pierre Rivere criticised Barcelona for allowing the deal to collapse but Ivory Coast international Seri told Catalan sports newspaper Mundo Deportivo he pins the blame squarely with his current employers.
Seri sat out Nice’s 3-0 defeat to Amiens this weekend and said: “I didn’t play with Nice this weekend because I didn’t have my head on football. My dream to go to Barca has been broken, and that for me is terrible.
“The conversations between the two clubs went from bad to worse. As far as I can tell, I’ve not left Nice due to financial reasons.
“After the [Champions League playoff against Napoli] I met with Barcelona’s directors for more than an hour and they didn’t tell me anything about not going through with signing me. I went home really happy; then the next day I read the news. I was stunned.
“I went to the Nice offices to see the board and find out what happened. I exploded! The walls shook. They didn’t say anything to me, they didn’t look me straight in the eye. They had promised me one thing, but didn’t keep their word and asked for more money.”
Seri has not given up hope entirely of the move being resurrected but added he would now also been keen on a move to the Premier League or another European heavyweight.
“I want to be optimistic and think that there are still options,” he said. “Let the two clubs talk quietly again and come to an agreement.
“We are not talking about any club, where you are going to sign for money.
“I want to sign up big European clubs, like Juventus, PSG, Arsenal, Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool…”
16 – Jean Michael Seri has been involved in 16 goals in Ligue 1 2016/17 (7 goals, 9 assists), no other Nice player has done better. Roma? pic.twitter.com/ykvwLESU9w
— OptaJean (@OptaJean) June 20, 2017
Seri says the Barcelona move is not the first time Nice have quashed his hopes of a transfer during the current window, claiming Serie A side Roma were similarly put off by their demands.
“Roma have made several offers,” he said. “I have spoken many times to Monchi [Roma’s sporting director], but the transfer didn’t happen for financial reasons.
“Monchi got tired of the Nice board. Roma is a good option, but nothing like Barca.”
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