New Derby County signing Krystian Bielik says he turned down Championship offers to sign for the Rams, Sportowefakty.wp.pl report.
Before the European Championships I got an offer from AC Milan, but during the tournament it changed and nothing came of it. I love Arsenal, I wanted to play there but I had to leave. I didn’t think I could cost £ 10 million after the League One season and Euro Youth. Also, I had offers from other Championship teams, but Derby paid the most.
Krystian Bielik became Derby’s number one signing this summer, penning a five-year deal. He arrived from Premier League side Arsenal for a fee which could rise to £10 million depending on clauses and sporting achievements.
The Poland international’s fee has raised questions. After all, he rarely featured in the Gunners’ first team squad and his only regular football came in League One last season at Charlton Athletic.
But Derby will feel Bielik has plenty of potential, and at 21 he represents a sound investment.
So far, new Derby manager Phillip Cocu has played Bielik at centre-back as he feels the Pole can build up his fitness there. However, long-term, the former Arsenal ace’s role should be in midfield.
Bielik also told the Polish publication that he harbours hopes of playing in the Premier League. He warns if the Rams fail to make it there within three years, then he could seek an exit.
Derby supporters may question his views as he essentially cites the club as a stepping stone. But for the club to thrive and be financially stable in the long-term, it makes sense to buy young players and then later sell them at higher value when the time is right.