Christian Eriksen says his decision to run down his contract at Tottenham made him a “black sheep” at the Premier League club.
The 27-year-old midfielder joined Inter Milan last month for a fee of around £17 million ($22 million), ending his six-and-a-half year stay at Spurs.
The Dane would have been out of contract at the end of this season and had been linked with a move away from London since revealing he was ready for a new challenge after Spurs’ Champions League final defeat to Liverpool in June. That admission prompted some fans to turn on him.
“I did get the blame for a lot of stuff, for being the bad guy,” he told BBC Sport. “I read I was the bad person in the changing room, that ever since I said I wanted to leave, it was no good me being there.” Eriksen said there was a sense of relief in starting a new chapter in Italy.
“England, for the last few years, was very hectic,” he added.
“After what I said in the summer, it was just about, ‘When is he going to leave?’ Every game it was, ‘Is he leaving? Is he not leaving?’ Of course a lot of people were speaking about it. Even the fans you see on the street were like, ‘Thank you, goodbye and good luck’. But I was still there. It was a bit weird. In my head and for my body, it is good that I am in a new place and I can start again.”
The Dane said speculation over his future did not affect him but that he felt he played about 30 matches that seemed like “goodbye games”.
“If you have a short contract, you will be the black sheep. Of course, I did the interview. I was very honest. I felt I had to be honest.”
Eriksen confirmed there had been talks with Manchester United but said a move to Old Trafford was never likely.
“It just came down to wanting to try a new challenge in a new country,” he said.
“Once Inter came up it really wasn’t a difficult choice.
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