Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori has revealed he snubbed a move to West Ham for the benefit of his career.

The Hammers had agreed a deal with their London rivals to sign Tomori on a season-long loan deal on transfer deadline day earlier this month.

However, the deal collapsed at the very last minute after the 22-year-old decided to stay put and fight for his spot in Frank Lampard’s side, much to West Ham’s disappointment.

In an exclusive interview with the Chelsea Mike’d Up podcast, Tomori conceded that he did consider a temporary move away from Stamford Bridge but felt it wouldn’t be in his best interests.

“I had a plan going into this season going off the back of last season,” he said.

“Obviously, in football, things change so quickly so I wanted to make sure whatever decision I made was really thought out and to try and do what’s best for me.

“I made the decision in the end to stay, to improve more, get some more games, gain some more experience and try and get to the levels I was at last season.”

Chelsea’s willingness to let Tomori spend the 2020/21 campaign in east London came as a surprise to him, considering they had previously rejected offers from Rennes and Everton for the defender.

Tomori admitted that uncertainty regarding his future was unsettling, especially towards the end of the international window.

“I wanted everything to be thought out and I thought about what was happening, especially when we had a few weeks off leading up to the new season,” he added.

“I was talking a lot with my agent, to get some clarity what was going on. With transfers I prefer if it wasn’t last minute, but situations happen where you have to take a decision quickly.

“It was one of those situations and, as you all know, I made a decision to stay.”

Lampard has a raft of options at his disposal in defence, with Thiago Silva joining Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen Kurt Zouma and Tomori this summer.

And Tomori says the Blues legend has embraced having as much depth as possible within his squad.

“He [Lampard] knows there is a big squad here and its more competitive than last year,” he explained.

“We’ve brought in some amazing players and I’m sure the manager is looking forward to working with every single player, to get us to gel as much as we can, try and get some results on the board and close that gap to the top of the table.”

 

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