Miralem Pjanic reveals why he rejected Barca move in 2008

Third time lucky. Miralem Pjanic is a Barça player after two unsuccessful attempts to sign him by the club, as revealed by the Bosnian midfielder himself in this part of the interview he gave to SPORT.

First, in 2008, when he was a promising but unknown midfielder for French team Metz. Later, already consecrated as a player in Serie A, Barça knocked on his door again.

You were a kind of Barcelona hero when you scored the goal that eliminated Madrid from the Champions League in 2009. A year before, you were close to signing for Barça. What happened?

I was not prepared to arrive at a club like Barça. I was 17 years old, I was too young and I was starting my professional career. I was not ready to take the step of joining a club of the magnitude of Barça. I preferred to go to Olympique de Lyon: I knew French football, I had been at Metz for years, and at that time I believed that the best thing was to go to the best club in France at that time, Lyon. The best thing for me was to keep learning, to keep training without missing minutes of play. When I look back and think about my career, I realize that whatever team it is, Metz, Lyon, Roma or Juventus, I was always going step by step, growing, having minutes and becoming important.

At that moment, did Barça call you for the first team or the B side?

For the B-team. But I think I chose well. It felt like that at the time. In my career I have always been able to choose, following my instincts, and I think I have done well. I remember that I was also at Uli Hoenness’s house, Bayern loved me at that time too, but for me the best thing was to stay in France. I never wanted to fly too high, or too quick, but to go step by step. And at that time the only way to learn was to keep playing.

Barça tried signing you again a couple of years ago.

Yes, we spoke two or three times in recent years. But it could not be because the clubs did not agree on terms, neither with Roma nor with Juve. Now things have turned out well and I am very proud to be part of this team. I have always considered myself a Barça fan.