Fulham attacker Ryan Babel has told the Dutch media he should have stayed at Liverpool, but he had to leave to keep his place in the Netherlands national team.

Babel joined Liverpool in 2007 and spent four seasons at Anfield.

In an interview with Voetbol International, the Dutchman was asked about being written off during his career: “I went to Liverpool at a young age, but I played quite a lot in my first year. The club wanted to keep me, but yes, I was out of the picture with the Dutch national team. With the knowledge of today I know that I then I made a panic move to Hoffenheim.

“Now they are a respected, stable sub-elite club, who are around eleventh, twelfth in the table. Afterwards I should have stayed at Liverpool, I was not so bad at all there.”

Babel signed for the Premier League club from Ajax for a transfer fee in the region of £11.5m after impressing during the 2007 Euro U21 tournament. He arrived on Merseyside with great expectations, but failed to make a real impact during his first spell in England.

However, the winger still went on to make 91 Premier League appearances during his time at Liverpool before his move to Germany in 2011.

After playing for a host of clubs, including a spell in the Middle East, Babel kick-started his career during his time at Besiktas. His performances for the Istanbul club enabled him to break back into the national team and now the player is having his second stint in the Premier League with Fulham.