Willian Talks About Rejecting Barcelona Offer and Desire to Rejoin Corinthians

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistNovember 8, 2019

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 05: Willian of Chelsea during the UEFA Champions League group H match between Chelsea FC and AFC Ajax at Stamford Bridge on November 5, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images)
James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Chelsea forward Willian has revealed he turned down a move to Barcelona in 2018, and would one day like to play for former club Corinthians again.

The Brazil international was previously linked with a switch to the Camp Nou, but the player said he opted to remain with the Blues in the Premier League.

Speaking to DAZN series Saudade (h/t TalkSport's Josh Fordham), Willian said he's settled in the capital, but would one day consider moving back to his first club—Brazilian league giants Corinthians.

"The only real official offer I had came from Barcelona, last year, after the World Cup.

"Barcelona indeed presented an offer to Chelsea but it was rejected.

"That was the only actual time I had to discuss something like this with my family, although we really love it here [in London]. So there were several factors that helped us in staying."

Willian is out of contract at the end of the season, but is reportedly keen on remaining in Frank Lampard's squad beyond 2020, per Fordham.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 05: Willian of FC Chelsea and Noussair Mazraoui of Ajax Amsterdam battle for the ball during the UEFA Champions League group H match between Chelsea FC and AFC Ajax at Stamford Bridge on November 5, 2019 in London, United Kingdo
TF-Images/Getty Images

The winger added it appeals to him to rejoin Corinthians if the opportunity presents itself in the future.

"If I have to return to Brazil, I'd like to play at Corinthians again.

"It represents a lot, I was born and raised there, my footballing career began there when I was nine, I've spent my entire childhood there.

"I've been a Corinthians fan since I was little, even before I played there, my family also supports the club. So when I got there all my relatives were very happy, and then, after I got to the first team, everyone was overjoyed."

Willian has become an elder statesman under Lampard, but the forward has plenty of miles left in the tank.

The progress of Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount has been astonishing in recent months. Willian's presence and experience have been valuable for Chelsea alongside his youthful team-mates.

Lampard will surely want to retain Willian beyond next summer, with the No. 10 a vital cog in the Chelsea machine.

The development of Callum Hudson-Odoi and Christian Pulisic could threaten Willian's future starting place, but the attacker has plenty to offer during the interim.

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