Radja Nainggolan has claimed he never came close to joining Chelsea
Chelsea have been linked with a move for Radja Nainggolan ever since Antonio Conte’s appointment as Blues boss in 2016.
The Italian admitted earlier this month he had attempted to sign the midfielder in the past, calling him “one of the best” in the world.
However, Nainggolan has admitted the Blues never came close to signing him as it never crossed his mind to leave the Stadio Olimpico.
When asked about joining the Blues ahead of Tuesday night’s Champions League clash in Rome, the Belgium international said: ”Well I made my choice.
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is a long-term admirer of Radja Nainggolan
"I never hesitated or thought for a minute so it doesn't matter if it's Chelsea or anyone else.”
And Nainggolan admitted he is instead fully focused on the match and getting a result after the 3-3 draw in the away leg at Stamford Bridge.
"It's always nice to play against a top team, and like all professionals I know how to prepare for them,” he added.
“I’m ready to give my best and hope to play well.
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Express Sport brings you everything you need to know about Chelsea target Radja Nainggolan
"If we win tomorrow, it would be a step forward to the knockout round. We take it game by game, our results are good. We must try and score more goals.”
I never hesitated or thought for a minute so it doesn't matter if it's Chelsea or anyone else
Speaking earlier this month about Nainggolan, Conte said: “In the past, yes, we tried to buy him.
“But now Nainggolan is Roma’s player and I have great respect for him and for Roma, and also for my players.
“He’s a really good player. For me, one of the best midfielders. But he’s an opponent.”
Nainggolan is under contract at Roma until June 2021, having agreed a new deal in July this year.