New Chelsea signing Saul Niguez has opened up about his decision to join the Blues on loan, admitting he had grown weary of playing out of position at Atletico Madrid.
The 26-year-old has been a prominent feature in Diego Simeone's side since 2014, although in recent years he has been deployed in a variety of positions rather than as an out-and-out central midfielder, where the Spaniard feels most comfortable.
"I felt stuck not playing in my position. My head didn't accept my new role of playing in a new position. I have had several conversations with [Simeone] about my positions, because it's not new, I have been like this for three years," Saul explained on Ibai Llanos' Twitch stream.
"I owe him everything, I have a great relationship with him but he has to be selfish and think about the group. If he thinks that the group performs better with me on the wing, he has to do it."
Saul insisted that his switch to Chelsea was a positive outcome for all involved. "In this, all parties came out on top. The club and the manager bring a player they wanted and I go out to a great club that loved me.
"Chelsea have promised to train me in my position," he continued. "To resume certain customs that I do not perform now, that is the most important reason for my decision."
Saul will likely don the number 17 shirt at Stamford Bridge - which he wore at Atleti until 2016 - with a shortage of free numbers for the 26-year-old to choose from. The Spaniard's preferred number eight shirt is occupied by fellow midfielder Mateo Kovacic.
Speaking on potentially wearing the 17, he added: “It’s a number I had at Atlético Madrid, it’s a number I like. I had it at Atlético. I had it in my early days.”
The Blues loanee insists that he is raring to go and ready to compete with existing midfielders Kovacic, N'Golo Kante and Jorginho following his arrival from Atletico Madrid.
He said: "The three midfielders who are playing are at a great level, it's not going to be easy to play, but if I put myself to the task and fight for it, I can get it."