Royston Drenthe has expressed his excitement at joining Everton on loan by launching an astonishing attack on Real Madrid, where is contract will expire at the end of this season.
Although the Dutchman insists he learned a lot during his time in La Liga, he firmly believes that the club has declined in recent years.
Following his quick rise to prominence with the Euro 2007 U-21 tournament’s triumphant Netherlands squad, Drenthe went on to become one of Real Madrid’s notable signings under Bernd Schuster.
However, following the first season of his five-year contract, he found himself down the pecking order at the Santiago Bernabeu, particularly with the Spanish giants continuously moving from one manager to another within a relatively short period of time.
The 24-year old Drenthe believes that the lack of stability from a managerial standpoint is the primary factor behind Real’s otherwise top-notch squad failing to overhaul bitter rivals Barcelona as the champions of Spain.
“My first year (in Madrid) was the best and nicest time; I learned a lot from players like Fabio Cannavaro, Raul, Michel Salgado, Guti, Robinho, Wesley Sneijder. Real Madrid had one of the best teams in the world with a mixture of young and old players and we were better than Barcelona,” Drenthe recollected.
He elaborated: “It changed a lot after that because team broke up. They changed the trainer (Bernd Schuster), changed the trainer again and again – they change their trainers like candy. That is normal at Real Madrid but I learned a lot.”
After spending last season on loan to Hercules, the player decided that this was the year to seal a move to the English top flight, with Goodison Park the only destination he considered seriously despite speculation linking him to Benfica and reigning Portuguese champions FC Porto.
“I am really happy I can make this step in my future. I think it is really important for me. I think Everton is a really good step for me. I have to train hard to get in the team and then I can demonstrate my quality in the games,” Drenthe explained with excitement.
He added: “Real wanted me to go to Benfica or Porto, teams like that, because they were prepared to pay a lot of money, but I did not want to go. When my agent told me I could sign for Everton I was like ‘Thank you God’. This is one of the best leagues in the world.”
Drenthe’s new club, the Toffees, will be at home to the unbeaten Aston Villa when the Premier League resumes this Saturday.