Ike Ugbo, who quit Chelsea this summer’s transfer market, has explained his decision to sign for Genk over Marseille after electing to depart the Blues.
The forward brought an end to a lifelong association with the west Londoners back in August when he decided to leave for Blauw-Wit in a £3.15m deal.
The talent had been with the club since 2007 when Ike joined as a youngster, progressing through their ranks up to the U23s set up three years ago.
Going further than that proved to be tough for the Englishman, though, with a series of loan stints at the likes of Roda JC, Scunthorpe, MK Dons and Cercle Brugge all failing to help his chances of senior team football.
Indeed, Ike left Stamford Bridge in the summer having failed to make a single appearance for the Premier League giants’ first team.
At the time of Ugbo’s departure, there was plenty of interest in the player, but he says past experiences made him head to De Smurfen instead.
“I spoke to the club at the end of last season, and they had a good plan for me,” Ugbo told Sport Magazine.
“Other teams came forward, but I felt I could find what I needed here at this point in my career. It was the project that attracted me.
“The young Ugbo might have opted for Marseille: a big club, in the south of France, close to the family. The prospect of playing against Lionel Messi…
“But the Ugbo of today thinks that might have been a mistake. After Cercle, Genk seems to me to be the ideal step to take.”