Veteran defender Sami Hyypia has admitted he considered leaving Liverpool during the January transfer window.
Hyypia, who is in his tenth season at Anfield, is yet to have signed a new contract with his current deal set to expire this summer, although reports have suggested he will be offered another extension, possibly joining Rafa Benitez’s coaching team.
Hyypia said “There were lot of rumours and a few offers as well. Sunderland and Newcastle were mentioned in the press they were both really interested in signing me. Many other teams were interested too.”
“Liverpool made it clear that they were not willing to sell me. That was it although I might have considered another option.”
Hyypia also spoke at his delight at being recalled to the Champions League squad and concentrating on the rest of the season before deciding his future.
The 35 year old Finn has made 16 appearances this season, scoring twice and impressing fans despite his years. He could well make a return to action this evening in the FA Cup replay at Everton to combat their aerial threat.
Hyypia wrote on his blog:
“Liverpool made it clear that they were not willing to sell me. The club decide these things and of course player can say he would like the club to listen the offers if the player is unhappy but if the club doesn’t want to sell there is not much player can do. Liverpool didn’t want to sell me even though I might have considered another option.”
“So I will spend the rest of the season in Liverpool. This is my 10th season and it is a great achievement. Liverpool is a big club were players come and go. Only a few players spends most of their careers in the same club nowdays and spending 10 years in a club where you have to fight for your place in the team every week and surviving the fight is something you learn to appriciate after you retire.”
“I will consider my options again in the summer when my current contract with Liverpool expires. New contract with Liverpool, transfer to another team…this transfer window proved that there are lot of team interested in me. It’s too early to say what is going to happen in the summer. It’s not my style to worry these kind of things in advance. Now I will concentrate on helping my team to win trophies in a role manager decides wheather it’s on the bench or on the pitch.”
“It’s fantastic to be back in Champions League squad. Official squad list was sent to UEFA last sunday and as normal Benitez was considering the list until the last minute. On Sunday he told me and the media that I was in the CL squad. It’s fantastic and I believe Liverpool can do well in the Champions League. We still have a lot to play in the league and in FA Cup. Win over Chelsea kept our dream alive and now we need to beat Everton.”
A key part in Hyypia remaining at Anfield may well have been his inclusion in the new Champions League squad after being omitted from the initial squad, something he admitted was a major blow. It has been suggested that Hyypia confronted Benitez over the manager’s decision not to include him, instead preferring full back Philipp Degen, and that Benitez changed his mind to add Hyypia to the squad. Degen has since gone on to pick up another injury and Hyypia can look forward to possibly making his first competitive appearance at the Bernabeu when the Reds travel to Madrid later this month.
With thanks to ‘Helsinki Red’ for the translations!