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Spanish Starlet Discusses Manchester United And Barcelona Interest

Koke was one of the best midfielders in La Liga last season.

Atletico Madrid midfielder Koke has admitted that he never thought about leaving Atletico Madrid during the summer despite reported interest from both Manchester United and Barcelona, the Daily Star reports.

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The 22-year-old has a £48 million release clause in his contract that both United and the Catalan giants pondered activating.

Although Diego Costa and Filipe Luis left the La Liga winners for Chelsea during the summer, the young midfielder says he never thought about following them out of the Atletico exit door.

Koke said: “We must thank the interest of Barcelona and other teams, but I’m happy because I want to be here, I’ve been here all my life and it was not time to go.

“The club is growing, we are growing as players – why I would go at the best time of Atletico Madrid?”

The young starlet has been compared with Barcelona great Xavi and could have replaced the 34-year-old in Luis Enrique’s first team had he moved to the Nou Camp.

Despite the comparisons, Koke insists he has a long way to go before he can match the Spanish great’s achievements.

“Xavi has won everything with Barcelona and here [with Spain],” he added.

“He has been top. I have a long way to go, a lot of work. But in the end, Xavi will be Xavi and Koke will be Koke.”

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