After months of public whining to the media through his agent about his situation at Leicester City, Nampalys Mendy finally got his move away from King Power Stadium, even if it wasn’t his first choice.
Admitting as much during a press conference when being presented to the media by his new club on Monday, relayed by Nice-Matin, the defensive midfielder is nonetheless pleased with the move to Nice, returning to his former club just a year after leaving it.
He said: “I didn’t expect to come back to Nice, but the circumstances were such that there was an opportunity for me. I took the chance to return here. For me, it isn’t a step backwards.
“I was injured practically all of last season, and I had two operations. With the club that Nice has become, I actually think it’s the opposite (of being a step backwards), and it’s a good thing for me. The atmosphere has been the same at the club. It’s like I never left.”
After all, Nice have changed a lot a since Mendy’s departure.
Changing managers, Lucien Favre’s side ended up an unlikely third in Ligue 1, ahead of Lyon and Marseille, and are now set to have a run at the Europa League after being knocked out of the Champions League qualifiers by a sublime Napoli.
As Mendy says, it isn’t exactly a step back, as Leicester will not be playing in any European competition this year after coming 12th in the Premier League last season.
And continental football is a must for a lot of players these days.