Brazilian striker Diego Costa admits he came close to signing for Liverpool but his connections to Atletico Madrid proved too strong.
The 24-year-old was reported to be the subject of a late £22million bid by Brendan Rodgers in the closing stages of this summer's transfer window.
Costa, who started his career with Portuguese side Braga, conceded a move to Anfield was on the cards but ultimately chose to reward the loyalty Atletico have displayed to him.
"I was close to leaving, Liverpool are a great team," he told Mundo Deportivo. "But after fighting so hard and overcoming difficulties to get my place at Atletico, how could I leave?"
Liverpool has since been linked with a January bid for the forward, but Costa remains adamant that he will be staying at the Estadio Vincente Calderon, where he is relishing the UEFA Champions League challenge ahead.