Monday September 14 2020
Castagne: 'Why I left Atalanta for Leicester'

Timothy Castagne explains why he left Atalanta for Leicester City. ‘Gian Piero Gasperini is one of the best coaches, but we didn’t really get along.’

The 24-year-old right-back made the move for €24m plus bonuses, just three years after he was signed from KRC Genk for €6.5m.

He made the perfect start to life in the Premier League, scoring on his debut in a 3-0 win over West Bromwich Albion.

“I always wanted to play in the Premier League and finally I am here,” the Belgium international told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“I could’ve renewed my contract with Atalanta, but I decided to leave after the Champions League quarter-final with PSG. It had nothing to do with money, it was about the football.

“I had been tested in the starting XI all week leading up to that game and then left out. It was, honestly, a surprise. I needed to play regularly, in the same role, as at times I was on the right, others the left, then the bench… I couldn’t speak ill of anyone at Atalanta, I just felt the need to have some consistency.

“There were offers from Serie A, but I couldn’t play for another Italian club after Atalanta. It was a wonderful experience, I was nobody when I arrived. Every game is a sporting battle in Italy and I improved so much thanks to my time there.

“In technical and tactical terms, Gasperini is absolutely one of the best, but we didn’t really get along that well as people. He has his way of doing things and rarely explains his decisions when leaving players out. It made me stronger mentally.

“I firmly believe only Ajax represent a better club for a young player than Atalanta. Juventus and Inter are a little above them in the Scudetto race, but La Dea have everything it takes to fight it out in Serie A and the Champions League.”

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