Spain and Juventus striker Fernando Llorente has revealed Real Madrid tried to sign him twice whilst he was at Athletic Bilbao.
The 6 foot 5 inch target man, 28, left the Basque Country for Turin on a free transfer this summer, but has only made six appearances for Juve, scoring once.
Llorente was also linked to the Premier League with Arsenal and Manchester City both rumoured to be after his services.
In an interview with Spanish newspaper Marca, Llorente said: “There had been real interest [from Real Madrid], but, because Athletic would not let me out, it was not feasible.
“It was a possibility. Madrid is one of the best teams in the world, but in the end [interest from] Juventus appeared, we negotiated and that gave me confidence.”
When asked how many attempts Real made to sign him, Llorente said “twice”.
Llorente refused to sign a new deal with Bilbao despite being one of several stars in the team that reached the Europa League final in 2012 under Marcelo Bielsa.
Speculation surrounding a proposed transfer to the Bernabeu began when Llorente was applauded by the crowd on his last visit to the Spanish capital with Athletic.
“That night was very nice for me,” recalled Llorente. “I was roundly criticized for responding with a salute to the affection of the fans.
“It did not sit well in Bilbao. I was having a good time and that the Bernabeu recognized the work I had done was appreciated.”
Although he has been in and out of Anontio Conte’s starting XI at Juve, Llorente is content in Turin for now.
“I am very happy and I want to succeed here,” he added.
Llorente competes with Montenegro national captain Mirko Vucinic, former Manchester City talisman Carlos Tevez and Fabio Quagliarella for a starting spot at Juventus.
The Old Lady are in Madrid for a Champions League group stage game against Real on Wednesday. Llorente may get another chance to show the Galacticos what they missed out on.