Kevin Gameiro explains decision to reject Barcelona

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Football News

Not many players are able to resist the glitz and glamour associated with playing for Barcelona.

The history, stadium, lifestyle and very regular success is usually enough to persuade the best footballers in the world to move to Catalonia and that's even before they push a jaw-dropping contract across the table.

All of those factors would have been running through Kevin Gameiro's mind once Barcelona confirmed their interest, but he surprisingly turned them down for Luis Enrique's title rivals Atletico Madrid.

The former Sevilla forward joined Diego Simeone's ranks in a deal thought to be in the region of £28 million last week and has explained why he could not accept the other offer on the table.

Barcelona can already boast a first-choice frontline of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez, making the La Liga champions a particularly unattractive proposition for strikers at the moment - a theory confirmed by Gameiro.

The 29-year-old told L'Equipe: "It was above all a sporting choice.

"I knew that if I went to Barca, I would have found myself as the fourth attacker. My game time would have reduced I think.

"In fact, there was more chance of me staying at Sevilla than going to Barcelona."

Such a high-profile snub further reiterates the idea that Enrique's men have become victims of their own success after winning back-to-back domestic titles and the Champions League in 2015.

Fully established forwards have little interest in being backup and it is making recruitment especially difficult at the Camp Nou.

Gameiro has also revealed what his new manager expects from him in the Spanish capital.

He added: "He (Simeone) told me that he was looking for a player like me who was able to provide an effort in defence like in attack.

"And also to be a goal scorer. Diego Simeone wanted above all someone who could blend into the collective."

The pressure is now on Gameiro to show exactly why he was wanted by one of the biggest clubs in the world and why he was right to turn down their offer.

Providing Gameiro is a success, he will hopefully set a good example for young players of the future to follow but chasing footballing ambitions over financial gains is always easier said than done.

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