Former Tottenham midfielder, Luka Modric has admitted that Daniel Levy blocked him from joining Chelsea a year before he completed a move to Real Madrid but insisted that he harbours no grudges against the Spurs chairman.
Much like at Spurs, the Croatian did not have the best of starts to his Real Madrid career but has since gone on to have tremendous success at the club.
He has now attained legendry status with Los Blancos but the 35-year-old’s career could have gone very differently had he secured a move to Stamford Bridge.
When asked why he did not join the Blues, Modric told FourFourTwo magazine: “Tottenham didn’t want to sell me to them, that’s why!
“It was nice to know that they were interested in signing me, because it showed that I was doing well, but it didn’t happen simply because Tottenham just didn’t want to sell me.”
Despite Levy’s refusal to let him leave, the midfielder insisted that he understood why the Spurs chairman did what he did and claimed that he should continue to put Tottenham’s interests first.
He said: “I think everyone knows that Daniel is a very tough negotiator, and from that standpoint, it’s really good for the club.
“I think he’s done so many great things for the club: they’ve progressed so well under him, and he always looks after their interests.
“As a player, sometimes you can’t understand this – you have something on your mind; you want to go; or you want to do something. But he was always looking after the best interests of Tottenham.
“That’s Daniel’s strong side and he needs to continue being like that, because the club is the most important thing.”
Modric did admit his disappointment at failing to win a trophy at Spurs but claimed that the squad he was part of began the club’s upward trajectory that has continued since he left.
When asked why the Lilywhites did not win silverware during his time at the club, he responded: “It’s difficult to say. We really had a very good team, with plenty of talent and potential.
“Maybe we could have done something more. We were close – we reached a League Cup final, and the semi-finals of the FA Cup at Wembley twice. We were close.
“But it’s difficult in England. It isn’t easy to win things, because there are so many big teams with great players.
“I think we played some excellent football and the fans enjoyed watching us, but it’s a shame that group didn’t win a trophy because I think we possessed everything that’s necessary to win titles.
“We achieved important things, though: qualifying for the Champions League in 2009-10, then again in 2011-12.
“Sadly, Chelsea then won the Champions League and we didn’t go. Spurs started growing as a team and a club with us there. That was also important.”
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