Javi Martinez has reflected on the difficult month that August was at Athletic Bilbao, and on how he developed whilst with the Basques.
The midfielder completed a €40m transfer to Bayern Munich this summer, after the Germans had to activate his buyout clause, against Athletic’s wishes.
“August was a tough month because they spoke of many things, there were ups and downs, but thankfully it turned out well,” he told Adidas in an interview.
“For Athletic I want to say thank you, all I have is good words. Since I was 17 and until this year that I have left, I was treated great.
“The fans who really know what I want and what happened to me, I know that they are still with me and support me, and I have no problems with them.
Martinez is now the most expensive player in the Bundesliga and reflected that the situation he finds himself in is similar to when he arrived at Athletic as a €6m youth from Osasuna.
“I want to perform in every game and thank the club for what they have paid.
“Since I began in the Primera Division at San Mames, I was lucky to have the support of each Coach. I had good times and bad, but mostly I was in the team.
“It was not easy because I had left home, moved to Athletic for a lot of money and I was very young, perhaps there was pressure.
“Thanks to my family I matured, I grew four or five years in a few days and then the pressure of being a big signing transformed into motivation. I am 100 per cent now and doing the right things.”
The Spain international also had some words of reflection for Marcelo Bielsa, who converted him into a ball-playing centre-back in 2011-12.
“When he arrived he told me he wanted me at centre-back because he wanted someone who could bring the ball out of the back close to Iturraspe.
“I said it was no problem, because I'll play wherever. He is a peculiar guy, he lives for football like no-one else in the world, it's his life.
“If there were 30 hours in a day he would spend 30 hours thinking about football, that's why they call him ‘El Loco’.”