"I could have gone to Liverpool..." - Former Real Madrid star claims he turned down Anfield move
| Last updated
Former Italian forward Antonio Cassano has revealed he could have joined Liverpool when he was leaving Real Madrid in 2008.
Cassano, often deployed as a central attacking midfielder, retired in 2018 after a varied career, playing for the likes of Bari, Roma, Real Madrid, Sampdoria, AC Milan, Inter Milan, Parma and Hellas Verona.
The 40-year-old earned his move to Los Blancos after a successful spell in Rome, where he scored 52 goals and registered 27 assists in 161 games for the Serie A club.
He struggled to replicate his form in Madrid, managing just four goals and three assists before being shipped out on loan to Sampdoria, who he moved to permanently the following season.
That move initiated a series of loan spells around Italy, with the Premier League seemingly out of reach.
However, the ex Italy international has since disclosed that Liverpool came knocking after he left the Bernaneu.
Cassano 'snubbed' Liverpool
When answering questions on his social media, Cassano confidently stated he "could have easily played in the Premier League", but instead chose to go home.
As quoted by Ita Sport Press, Cassano said: “If I could have played in the Premier League? With a pipe in my mouth.
“I could have easily played in the Premier League. Even players like Coutinho, Zola, Carbone, they were similar players to me, but I do another sport obviously.
“They did well there. Because it’s true that they are physically strong and go a thousand miles an hour, but qualitatively… – even if they’ve been going up a lot for 3-4 years, but we’re talking about 15 years ago.
“When I was leaving Real Madrid, I had an offer from the Premier League. I could have gone to Liverpool. But I wanted to go home.
“I thought though: ‘If I’m abroad, in the strongest team in the world, what do I do, go to England? Either I go back home, or I stay at Real. But I would have played there very easily.”
Instead of signing Cassano, Liverpool opted to spend their money on the likes of Robbie Keane, Javier Mascherano and Albert Riera that year.