HOME-TOWN hero Pau Torres refused to give up on Villarreal despite multi-million pound interest from Tottenham this summer.
The defender was a top target in North London as Spurs looked to rebuild under then-manager Nuno Espirito Santo.
But the 24-year-old has revealed the prospect of playing in Europe with his boyhood club was enough for him to snub a Premier League move.
He told the Guardian: “The pull of playing the Champions League with the team from my town was bigger. I was clear from the start.
“This is only the fourth time Villarreal reached the Champions League, which shows how hard it is and it was a dream to play the competition with my lifelong club.
“The president didn’t put pressure on me, even though they could make a lot of money.
“He always said “the decision’s yours,” that he’d respect it. I appreciate that.”
Villarreal are having a mediocre season as they sit 12th in LaLiga but next face the unhappy Manchester United in Tueday’s Champions League action.
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They were narrowly defeated 2-1 in their last meeting with the Red Devils as Cristiano Ronaldo smashed a winner deep into stoppage time.
Torres admitted it was dreams of nights like this that kept him at El Madrigal – but he did not rule out a Premier League move in the near future.
“I still have a contract (until 2024). I thought about what was best for me in the present.
“I really wanted to play this competition with Villarreal: you don’t know when that opportunity will come again. Let’s see how far we can go.”
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