Figo wasn’t ‘appreciated’ at Barca

Luis Figo has revealed not feeling appreciated at the Camp Nou was the main force behind his decision to leave Barcelona for Real Madrid in 2000.

The then-world record fee of 10m pesetas (£37m) stunned world football as the Barca idol joined their fiercest rivals which promoted a furious reaction by the Catalans, including a pig’s head being thrown in his direction upon his return to his old club with Madrid.

"There was a lot of pressure," Figo told an interview with La Liga’s website.

"There was a time when I thought it would not happen. But it was not just the sporting and the financial side, there were other people involved. There are always moments when you have doubts, you think a lot about whether to do something, until you take the step and there is no going back.

"In the final accounts, the same as in any profession, if you do not really feel 100 percent recognised for what you put in and what you do – I am not talking about the fans, but those who manage and control the club – when you have other offers you think about making a change. And that's what happened."

Tags Luis Figo