Daniele De Rossi has explained why it took him so long to sign a new contract with hometown club Roma.
The Giallorossi yesterday revealed that the player had extended his agreement which was set to expire in June 2012.
“The obstacle was always my wages and we discussed that element a lot,” he stated at a Press conference on Monday. “I only asked for one figure from the very first day.”
The Italian international has put pen to paper on a five-year deal until 2017 that will cost Roma €10m a season before tax. De Rossi will earn €5.5m net and there is a 50 per cent agreement over his image rights.
“I’m really happy here, I’ve taken the decision that I have always wanted,” continued the capital-born player.
“At one stage I didn’t feel loved on a professional level. I wasn’t seen as a strong player and I was also responsible for that. I need to stay here if I am wanted, especially in my home.
“There was also a moment when I was attracted by the idea of seeing myself on a new stage and playing against the best for the most important trophies.
“I don’t think it is a secret that I spoke to other clubs, a few chats did take place. I wanted to see how good I was at certain levels. I’ll try to do that here.”
De Rossi added that he was convinced to prolong his Giallorosso career thanks to the new project at the club and by the presence of boss Luis Enrique.
“I can’t hide the fact that I took a long time to decide,” continued the Roma youth product. “I expect a lot from this club.
“If I had other doubts then it was about the project as I can’t wait 20 years for the Scudetto.
“I want this to be a season of passage, but I hope that the director general [Franco Baldini] works to construct a winning project. We have to mature, but we want to fight for the title.
“It is a decision made with my heart and also my head," he added. "I’m not staying at Roma to be a tourist, but I believe in the project and I expect a lot from the club.
“Luis Enrique? He was fundamental. He re-lit the light in me that all players need. He’s the best Coach I’ve ever had. I’m on his wavelength with everything.”
There was speculation that De Rossi’s contract would have a rescission clause inserted into it, but Baldini has today confirmed that wasn’t included.
“Perhaps it would have offered the club a bit more security,” De Rossi, 28, continued. “However, having a rescission clause would have affected my relationship with the club and with the city.”