Despite being linked with a transfer to Manchester United all summer, 24-year-old striker Álvaro Morata completed a £58m move to Chelsea after the Red Devils opted to sign Belgian international Romelu Lukaku.
Madrid-born Morata spent time in the youth system of Atlético and Getafe before finding a home with Los Blancos. Morata would go on to spend six years in the Spanish capital before completing a £18m move to Turin, with now-Chelsea manager Antonio Conte signing him at Juventus.
Two years and 93 appearances later, Real Madrid brought Morata back to the Santiago Bernabéu. The Spain international has since completed a big money move to Stamford Bridge and when speaking to the Daily Mail, Morata confirmed that he was a wanted man this summer.
“Yes. I had various offers this summer, not only Chelsea and Manchester United but also from different leagues,” Morata said. “It was a good situation for me. The most important and best conversation I had was with Conte, he wanted me to come here.
“At the start of the summer, I didn’t know that Chelsea were interested in me. I thought they were in for a different player. Maybe Lukaku or maybe someone else, I don’t know. I didn’t think the option of Chelsea was open,” he added.
“But I spoke with Conte several times – and not only this summer. I felt in debt to him. He signed me for Juventus but left very quickly to manage Italy. I always wanted to play for him after that.
“It was only two months with him but it felt like I’d known him forever. When I knew he wanted me this summer, I didn’t think twice. I did everything I could to make the move happen.
“Last summer it was close. Cesar Azpilicueta was a bit annoyed because he had already started house-hunting for me last summer. We’d even got estate agents on board. This time Cesar has sorted everything!
“When I spoke to Conte last summer, I said ‘If I’m going to leave Real Madrid, it will only be for Chelsea’.
“I remember I was with my wife after hearing him out conversation and I said ‘Chelsea are going to win the league this season.’ And that’s exactly what happened. Now we need to repeat it!”