A year after departing Camp Nou, new Milan forward Bojan Krkic has admitted he never envisaged leaving Barcelona.
The young Spaniard played over 100 games for the Blaugrana before joining Luis Enrique's ambitious Roma project last summer. After a disappointing 12 months in the Italian capital, which ended with Enrique's sacking and Bojan being frozen out by new boss Zdenek Zeman, the 22-year-old is now keen to establish himself with new employers Milan.
“I could not imagine playing for any other club,” he told the Gazzetta dello Sport. “I arrived at Barcelona when I was nine, and stayed there for 12 years.
“Then I got the opportunity to come to Italy and I thanked God for it. Italian football is more tactical and tidy. There is more attention to the defensive side of the game.
“I did not think Luis Enrique would fail, but the error was to try and turn Roma into Barcelona.
“I've been shown another world in Italy. I have met completely different people, and this can only be good for my growth as a professional.
“I want to do well at Milan and give everything. I hope to stay here for a long time.”
The former Spain international went on to praise his former Barca tutors Frank Rijkaard and Pep Guardiola.
“Rijkaard had complete trust in me. It was a difficult year when he left, but he has a great personality. I had a relationship with him that I haven't had with anyone else.
“For all he has won, I think Guardiola is probably the best Coach in the world.”
Bojan also lauded the man he is replacing in Milan, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and revealed why he has chosen the no 22 shirt.
“Ibra is a great player with a big heart. I think he deserved to have been received differently by the Barcelona fans.
“I chose the shirt because I joined Milan on the day I turned 22.”