Manchester City forward Nolito revealed that he snubbed Barcelona for the opportunity to play regular first-time football under new manager Pep Guardiola.
City beat Barca to the signing of the 29-year-old Spain international after triggering the £13.8-million release clause in his contract with Spanish La Liga side Celta Vigo.
The move means that Nolito will once again work under Guardiola, who handed him his Barcelona debut during the 2010-11 season, reports SkySports.
‘The truth is I enjoyed working with him in Barcelona even though it wasn’t much time. It’s a reason for me to come here but not the only one,’ Nolito said.
‘But it was also about City, they have a great team, it’s a great project, they got to the semi-finals of the Champions League last season and the truth is I will try to help this club achieve great things.
‘I thought it was the best decision for me and my career. I have come to the Premier League to play with City and under Pep Guardiola, who will play me in the first team, and I am very happy with the decision I took. It took me just two days to make the decision.’
The Spanish international insists that he is looking forward to the challenge of playing in the Premier League.
‘I wish Barcelona all the best. I am very proud of Barcelona’s interest, but now I am here and I think I made the best decision to come here,’ he added.
‘I was fortunate to play in Barcelona, although not much in the first team, and now I am excited about playing at City and I will try to do great things here.’
Nolito had the chance to play alongside Lionel Messi if he signed for Barca but he admits that he cannot wait to link up with Sergio Aguero at City.
‘They are different. Messi can play in several areas of the pitch, but Aguero is a killer. I played with Messi. Now I’m lucky to be playing with Aguero and I hope he can score lots of goals. I can’t wait to play with him,’ the Spaniard said.
‘We have good players from the goalkeeper to the strikers. We have it all and I think that it’s one of the best teams in Europe. We have some of the best players and facilities in Europe. I’m very happy with what I have seen so far.
‘Why can’t we win the league? It’s a different league, the hardest in the world and I think we will try to win it. Let’s see what happens.’