Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain joined Italian giants AC Milan on a one-year loan deal worth a reported 18 million euros (USD 21 million) with the Serie A club having an option to buy the striker next summer for a further 36 million euros. However, for much of the summer transfer window, the former Real Madrid and Juventus forward was heavily linked with a move to London club Chelsea. Higuain has now revealed that he picked AC Milan over Chelsea because the only person at the Premier League club who wanted to sign him was the Blues' new coach Maurizio Sarri.
Higuain has a good relationship with Sarri, having played under the manager at Napoli.
The 30-year-old, who scored a record 36 Serie A goals under Sarri in 2015-16, said that the Premier League club didn't do enough to sign him.
"The esteem in which I hold Sarri isn't new. But the only person who wanted me there (at Chelsea) was him. Everyone wanted me here," Higuain said to reporters during his official unveiling as a Milan player.
Higuain's arrival has revived enthusiasm around Milan after a troubled period marked by on-pitch embarrassment and financial woes.
Last season they scored just 56 league goals as they finished sixth despite spending over 200 million euros (USD 233 million) on new players.
The 30-year-old, who scored 40 league goals in two seasons at Juve, is gunning for what would be a first taste of European success following the club's readmission to the Europa League.
The closest striker Higuain has come to tasting European success in his career was the 4-1 thrashing at the hands of former club Real Madrid in the 2017 Champions League final, and the Argentina international wants Milan to push for the Europa League.
Milan meanwhile have been in decline since last winning the league in 2011. Their last appearance in the Champions League was in 2013-14, when they reached the last 16, while last season Arsenal swatted them 5-1 at the same stage of the Europa League.
(With AFP inputs)