Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez claims he never considered leaving the Nou Camp over the summer, despite confirming that he was the subject of two separate transfer bids.
Former Manchester City youngster Suarez has struggled to establish himself as a regular first-team fixture since returning to Catalonia in July 2016 following a successful year-long stint with Villarreal. He made just 12 La Liga starts during Luis Enrique's final campaign in charge.
The 23-year-old was subsequently linked with a potential second exit from Barcelona as the La Liga giants strengthened their midfield options with the signing of former Tottenham Hotspur flop Paulinho and also engaging in high-profile pursuits for the likes of Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, Paris Saint-Germain favourite Marco Verratti and Jean Micheal Seri of OGC Nice.
Napoli were said to be willing to pay €30m (£26.3m, $35.3m) to take Suarez to Serie A, while Marcelino supposedly targeted a reunion with his former Villarreal midfielder at Valencia.
Premier League rivals Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur were also rumoured to be interested in a player whose current release clause stands at €50m, although it appears that he always intended to remain at Barcelona.
"I never thought about leaving and although it is true that I had two offers, I did not consider either," Suarez told Spanish TV, as reported by Marca.
"I didn't want to move from here, I know that I have the confidence of the coaching staff, of the players, and I believe I'll get opportunities and hope to make the most of them. My goal is to be important here and I will not stop fighting until I achieve that."
Although Barcelona failed to land a number of their priority targets during a difficult summer transfer window, Suarez still faces significant competition for places in the form of Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Ivan Rakitic, Paulinho, Sergi Roberto, Andre Gomes and Arda Turan. Rafinha Alcantara is expected to be sidelined for another two months as he continues to recover from knee surgery.
Despite that, however, the one-cap Spain international has featured more regularly under new boss Ernesto Valverde and seems content with his increased exposure to regular first-team football.
"Perhaps so far this season it has [been better than last season] – I have started games and have been important," he added. "I can't stop there, I have to fight for more game time and more starts."
Suarez was effusive in his praise of Valverde, describing him as a "totally different character to Luis Enrique" with a "calm manner and good judgement" who has made Barcelona better in terms of tactics and style. He also dismissed unfair criticism over the €40m signing of Paulinho, who has enjoyed early success in silencing his doubters.