Stoke City new boy Dean Whitehead has revealed Sunderland boss Steve Bruce was not keen to see him leave the Stadium of Light.
Whitehead has signed a four-year contract with the Potters after Sunderland accepted an initial sum of £3million from their Premier League rivals.
The midfielder admits Bruce was reluctant to sell, but after spending five seasons with the Black Cats, the 27-year-old felt it was time to move on.
"Steve Bruce was not too keen on me leaving, but he knew I needed a fresh start and we came to an agreement," Whitehead told the Sunday Sun.
"A lot of the talk about me moving happened before he got to the club.
"I did speak to him, but that was more about pre-season because my mind was made up and nothing was really going to change that.
"It was a wrench to leave the club because I had five great years there and I was captain for three.
"But I felt my time there had come to an end and I needed a new challenge. That's what I have here at Stoke.''
Whitehead also revealed that he spoke to Liam Lawrence and Danny Higginbotham regarding swapping Sunderland for Stoke.
He added: "I knew Stoke were interested a couple of months ago and I'm glad to have got it sorted out.
"I spoke to Liam and Dan a couple of times about the move and it obviously helps you to settle in knowing a couple of the lads."