Ander Herrera Turns Down Offer To Return To Athletic
Ever since Ander Herrera left for Manchester United back in 2014 Athletic have been hoping to one day bring him back to San Mamés. Herrera’s departure didn’t go over well with the fans, but many have been willing to forgive the midfielder were he to ever return. However, Herrera has made it clear that he won’t be putting the Zurigorri shirt back on again.
“Athletic is a great team and they have fantastic players, but I want to be here,” Herrera said during an interview with El Transistor. “I like this club (PSG) and the team. I will make the most of this experience. When I leave football I want to know that I have used up all my bullets. I hope to enjoy football for at least four or five more years.”
Rafa Alkorta had admitted in the past that he’s tried to convince Herrera to return to Athletic. The midfielder confirmed that talks have taken place, but that he’s declined the offer.
“I’ve had the opportunity to speak to Rafa Alkorta. I’ve always had a wonderful relationship with him. When I was a player there he worked in the media and was always very close to footballers and very respectful. He’s always seemed like a person that is respected because he was a footballer not so long ago. It’s true that we speak, that we’ve spoken.”
Despite the fact that Herrera won’t be returning to Athletic, he is still fond of the club. “I follow Athletic closely,” he said. “I really enjoyed being at the club for three years and for my the philosophy is beautiful. I still have friends there and great affection for the club, but I have been a Zaragoza supporter since I was very little.”
Ultimately, Herrera’s heart still lies with Real Zaragoza where he was raised before joining Athletic in 2011. If the 30-year-old ever does go back to Spain he wants to finish his career with his boyhood club.
“If I return to Spain my idea is to return to Zaragoza. As I have already said I have a huge love for Athletic. I really enjoyed my time there and I’m super grateful, but first of all I want to enjoy playing for one of the best teams in the world. I still have four years on my contract here. I play with some of the best players in the world right now and I want to enjoy it.”
Ander Herrera has seemingly closed the door on every returning to Athletic. He will carry a special place in his heart for the Zurigorri, but putting the shirt on again isn’t an option anymore.