Luis Alberto considers leaving Liverpool to be “the best decision” of his life, with the Spaniard having to walk away from Anfield and link up with Lazio in 2016.
The Spain international winger was a highly-rated prospect when the Reds snapped him up for £6.8 million ($8m) in 2013.
He was, however, to struggle for regular game time during his spell on Merseyside. Just 12 appearances were made for Liverpool, with loan moves to Malaga and Deportivo La Coruna.
Alberto’s efforts in Spain convinced Lazio that he was worth a punt and the Serie A giants acquired the talented midfielder in a cut-price transfer.
The 27-year-old has starred in Italy, sparking talk of interest from leading sides across Europe, and is in line for a new contract at Stadio Olimpico.
Alberto told Onda Cero via Instagram of his route to the top and need to get away from Liverpool: “I wasn’t mature enough at Sevilla and made the step up in quality quite late in the day.
“I didn’t get the playing time I wanted at Liverpool, then I started well at Malaga and was enjoying my football at Deportivo when I got injured.
“I made the big step up at Lazio, a wonderful club. Joining Lazio was the best decision of my life.
“Nobody really knew me and that was my fault. I was training by myself at Liverpool, but changed mentality with (coach Juan) Campillo and took that next step.”
Alberto started out at Sevilla and would like to return to his roots at some stage, but his immediate future lies in Serie A.
He added: “I always said Sevilla is my home and I’d like to return there, but my future is at Lazio, so that is practically impossible. Talks are at an advanced stage for a contract extension and I think it’ll come soon.”
Competitive football is currently shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic, with Italy among the countries to have been hardest hit, but there is now light at the end of the tunnel.
Alberto added: “We get the feeling that we can return to training by the end of the month, even if just in small groups. It is slowly calming down, although the situation was never as bad in Rome as in the north.
“I want to complete the season, as it would be the right thing for those at the top and bottom of the table. The timing all depends on how the virus evolves.”
Serie A was placed into a state of indefinite postponement with Lazio sat second in the table, one point adrift of Juventus with 12 games left to take in.