Adel Taarabt gave a surprisingly honest interview on Milan, Clarence Seedorf, why he didn’t shine in England and going AWOL from Morocco.
The Moroccan international is on loan from QPR, though there are reports a €4m deal has already been struck to make the move permanent.
“I haven’t heard that,” he told Tuttosport. “If we qualify for the Europa League preliminary rounds, then I might only sign on August 31, so at least I can keep my summer vacation!
“Obviously the Champions League is something else, but the Europa League is still a prestigious tournament. Next year Manchester United could be in it.”
Taarabt never quite showed what he could do in the Premier League, but reveals he was every bit as unimpressed with the game in England.
“When you are in London, if you play well and do one stupid thing, only the latter is of any interest. Mario Balotelli knows all too well what happens in England.
“In Italy, instead, if you do a stupid thing and play really well, then you are still an idol. Is that why I made my mark here? Let’s just say that nobody watches Fulham games, whereas Milan’s matches go all over the world.
“It’s also true that here every time I go outside, someone immediately warns Adriano Galliani. I cannot take a step without him knowing what I’ve been up to. I will be a good boy until Milan sign the contracts, then we’ll see! But don’t write that down!”
Taarabt was asked about his most famous incident, when he got on a bus after his substitution for QPR and went to the pub.
“Everyone knows that one, so I’ll tell you a different incident. Once in a training retreat with Morocco I learned from the tactical meeting that I wasn’t going to play. So I waited for the team to start training, called the Fulham secretary and got them to book me a ticket from Marrakech to Marseille.
“I escaped for two days in France and they were looking for me all over Morocco!”
Yet Taarabt has been accepting of the bench under Seedorf at San Siro, despite scoring on his Serie A debut.
“Seedorf took me aside and explained he wanted to keep me out to protect me, to avoid me getting caught up in the protests against the team.
“I get on well with the Coach and not just because he immediately gave me the chance to prove myself. He was a great champion and gives a constant stream of advice. He keeps telling me I have great talent, but not the concentration to match.
“He also tells me to play it simple, not to just try dribbling past players, and to combine more with my teammates.”