Southampton defender Ryan Bertrand has explained the decision that led him to St Mary’s from Chelsea in 2015.
Bertrand, who made a surprise start in the Champions League final against Bayern Munich back in 2012, was expected to progress from there and emerge as the replacement for Ashley Cole. Yet three years later, he was on his way to Southampton, having failed to establish himself in the side.
Having left Stamford Bridge, Bertrand has become one of the best defenders in England, even making into the PFA Team of the Year in the 2014/15 campaign.
Speaking to the ?Mail in an exclusive interview, the 28-year-old claimed that he didn’t feel like a footballer at Chelsea and didn’t feel like he had their support.
“It was emotional in terms of Chelsea being the club I had been at since I was young and taken part in one of their most historic moments.
“There was the emotional attachment but from a football perspective it was a no-brainer [to leave].
“When I was there (Chelsea), whenever I did get the chance to play I never felt the full support to relax and enjoy my football.
“The times I did play it was like an audition. And that is never healthy.
“As a young player coming through you want the club to be stable enough to say, “We trust in you, go out there and play”.
“You don’t want to make a young player feel on edge. I wanted that consistency — and for people to judge you they need to see you consistently.
“Southampton has given me a fantastic base in being able to do that and progress.”