S.S.C Napoli captain Marek Hamsik has admitted he considered leaving the club after an offer came in from Borussia Dortmund back in 2016.
The Slovakian has been present for the Serie A outfit since signing in 2007 from Brescia, but has been continually linked with a move away from the Italian giants in recent seasons.
Whilst many teams have been linked with Napoli’s star man, including a host of Chinese clubs in the summer, it was Dortmund who came closest to the Slovak’s signature back in 2016. The player has now opened up on just how close he came to actually making the deal happen.
As reported by SportBild (via Football Italia), Hamsik said: “I was close to Borussia Dortmund and I negotiated with the club, it’s true.
"However, the negotiations weren’t so easy. I was told that Borussia had to sell some of their players before they could sign me."
Hamsik ended up staying in Italy, as Napoli finished in second place in Serie A in the following season - where he made an appearance in all 38 league matches. But he continued to express his reasons for staying, adding that the deal eventually took too long to complete.
He added: "The negotiations dragged on until August. At the time I’d already started preparing for the new season with Napoli and I didn’t want to leave."
Hamsik remains at Napoli, and he did recently break the club's all-time appearance record during a UCL group match with PSG, making his 512th appearance and overtaking Giuseppe Bruscolotti in the process.
Napoli face Red Star Belgrade on Wednesday night in their penultimate Champions League Group Stage match, while Dortmund meet Club Brugge.