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Espanyol Boss Rejects Chance To Return To England

Espanyol boss Quique Sanchez Flores has rejected an approach by Premier League side Stoke City, deciding to stay in Catalan.

Flores looked set to sign a five-year contract with Stoke after after vice-chairman John Coates and chief executive Tony Scholes flew to Barcelona on Wednesday for talks.

Flores then met with Espanyol’s general sports director Oscar Perarnau and sports director Jordi Lardin and the duo must have been convincing because the former Atletico Madrid and Watford manager held a press conference ahead of Sunday’s La Liga clash with Athletic Bilbao where he revealed his intention to stay in Spain.

‘I am and will be the manager of Espanyol,’ he said.

‘I belong to Espanyol. I have a contract and I am honest with the club. I am absolutely happy with my situation, I do not have to explain anything else.

‘There is nothing to tell. Football brings up these kind of situations where clubs ask. Here at Espanyol it is difficult to move someone. We feel happy. We are in a happy place and we don’t want to break that up.’

Flores, who guided to Watford to a 13th-placed Premier League finish and an FA Cup semi-final during his one season in English football in 2015-16, continued:

“Football brings these types of situations and clubs ask questions and find out what they find out. It happens constantly with the players.

“But the important thing is that we think. We are happy, we have many things that make us feel like that.

“We like the connection (with the club), how they treat us, I like that Espanyol are growing. I’m in a great city and am involved in one of the best leagues in the world.

“Everything I need, I have here.

“I have nothing else to add, only that I have to focus on the next LaLiga match.”