Chelsea forward Alvaro Morata says he would never have left Juventus, had he not been ordered back to Real Madrid in 2016.
The 25-year-old spent two seasons with the Bianconeri, but the deal which saw him move to Turin from Madrid for €22 million in 2014 included a clause which allowed Los Blancos to sign him back for a fixed sum.
Aware that they would likely sell him on for a profit -- which they did this summer -- Real activated that option in 2016, buying him back for a reported €30m in 2016, but Morata says he did not enjoy having to move back to Spain, telling La Gazzetta dello Sport that he would still be a Juve player now if he had been given a choice.
"There were contractual agreements to respect, but the disappointment was enormous -- I found myself right back where I had started," Morata said. "They treated me like the lad that I was before my two years in Italy.
"My two years at Juve were fantastic. I was just a lad when I arrived and I was a real footballer when I left. For a Spaniard, Italy is the best place to live. You've got all the beauty, history, art, good food and fashion.
"I would never have left Italy and Juve."
Morata still scored 15 goals in 26 appearances for Real, and won La Liga and the Champions League before joining Chelsea in a move he said started to take shape before the end of last season.
"I came here because they have a coach like Antonio Conte," he said. "We started to talk about me possibly coming here last spring and, in the end, I actually came to London. There were a series of situations that were favourable, starting with the coach -- I knew Conte and I had no problems fitting into his ideas of football.
"[Conte] is demanding, but he gets the best out of his players' strengths. You can tell that he knows what it is like to be at a big club, first as a player, then as a coach."
Morata has scored six goals in nine Premier League games this season, while he also found the back of the net in Chelsea's 2-1 win at Atletico Madrid in the Champions League.
He will be hoping to add to that on Chelsea's next foray into Europe in Rome on Tuesday night, although the reverse fixture just a fortnight ago showed that the Giallorossi are not to be taken lightly.
"Roma have impressed me and they would have deserved to have beaten us in London," Morata said. "We got away with it. But we start from scratch again this time and, after our three wins in a row, I think that Chelsea will be more motivated.
"Roma created us problems in London and I'd say they have an edge over Atletico."
Edin Dzeko scored twice in the 3-3 draw at Stamford Bridge and Morata paid tribute to the former Manchester City forward, who has failed to hit the target in his past four Serie A outings, after netting seven in his previous five.
"He was extraordinary," Morata said. "His first goal was a masterpiece. I've always liked Dzeko -- he's a champion."