Chelsea have already started planning for next season after not investing in new signings for two windows.
On February 14th, the Blues agreed a deal with Ajax to take Hakim Ziyech after the end of the season.
The 2019/20 Eredivisie season has been declared void due to the Covid-19 outbreak, meaning the Morocco international has played his last fixture for the Amsterdam club.
Voetbal International have conducted an interview with the winger and his representative, Mustapha Nakhli. The latter revealed his client turned down approaches from other clubs before agreeing a deal with Frank Lampard’s side.
“I let him be completely himself, only then does Hakim develop into the special player he has already become. That’s why I have no doubt that he will succeed at Chelsea,” Nakhli said.
“Hakim is an adult player, a real leader by now. He also knows very well what he can do and where he wants to go. That is why we waited a long time for a transfer, because the right club with the right story did not pass by.
“We rejected really big European clubs. Not just Sevilla. There were clubs in November that wanted to take over Hakim during the winter break. I’ve never flown so much. But in the end, we didn’t feel good about it.”
Nakhli gave an insight on how the negotiations progressed with the west London club and stressed a conversation with Lampard was key for the player.
“When the interest became concrete, we first spoke to Marina Granovskaia, the director of Chelsea. The plans they have with Hakim looked very good. Chelsea also sees a leader in Hakim, they praised his personality,” he added.
“The first conversation between Frank Lampard and Hakim took place over the phone at my office. ‘We clicked’ he said afterwards. Hakim is an emotional person, so if it feels good, it is good too.”
The Stamford Bridge club wanted to take Ziyech earlier this year, but the deal never materialised because of Ajax’s stance.
“Chelsea also wanted to take over in January, but Ajax did not want to participate. We respected that and Hakim wanted to finish well in Amsterdam and say goodbye with dignity. It was a great year for him at Ajax,” the representative explained.
The 27-year-old’s agent also admitted Ziyech’s next goal is to succeed at Chelsea.
“We don’t look up to anything. We make a step-by-step plan and we stay behind that. We never blame each other,” Nakhli stressed.
“Hakim never cares about money anyway. ‘I completely leave that to you,’ he says. This was also the case in the negotiations with Chelsea. ‘Is it okay,’ asked Hakim. If I say yes, it is immediately yes for him.
“I have made Hakim the highest paid footballer in the history of Ajax and the Eredivisie. He doesn’t ask for that, but I think he is the best player, then he should be paid the best. So, he trusts me completely in that.
“On the other hand, we never chose the money. It’ll come. Hakim wants to be the best, that is his aim. He was in the Netherlands and now succeeding at Chelsea in England is the next goal. Hakim is absolutely ready as a person and player.”