Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain admits that he could have “done better” during his loan spell at Chelsea, but added that winning the Europa League was ultimately a positive outcome.
Higuain was brought in as a January signing in 2019, with then-boss Maurizio Sarri having secured a loan move for the Argentine – whom he had previously trained at Napoli – from Juventus.
A mid-season switch and adapting to a new league meant Higuain didn't hit the peaks that he would have liked at Stamford Bridge. And while he understands that expectations were high, the 32-year-old is still happy with his contributions made to the Blues' cause.
“I could have done better,” Higuain told the Telegraph of his time in London.
“But I think what I did is not bad and then we managed to win the Europa League and reached the Champions League, so they were good results. People expected more from me but I think the goals were fine in that short time.
“If you're a good player then people expect everything from you. But sometimes people don't take into account that you are coming from a different league, from the Italian one that is completely different to the Premier League.
“People don’t consider the fact that I played there for only a few months. Yes, I understand that they expected more from me and I appreciate that because that means that they relied on me. I also know that people have good expectations from the best players.
“I always welcome criticism, provided that it is constructive and not destructive. I just want to say that I had the chance to play in one of the best leagues in the world.”
With Chelsea having opted not to extend Higuain's loan, he returned to Juve in the summer and was quickly reunited with Sarri, who replaced Massimiliano Allegri in the dugout in Turin.
And while the frontman says that he has learned something from every coach he has had in his career, he insists that Sarri is the man who gets him playing at his best.
“I have learnt a lot from every manager I have worked with, but there’s no doubt Mr Sarri is the one who gets the best out of me,” he said. “He never gives up. Sarri is so stubborn and, with me, it helps.
“We have a good relationship but, as we are both stubborn, sometimes we clash, but it’s a good conflict.
“There’s nothing wrong with being stubborn: if you are not stubborn enough, you don’t have success and you disappear among the others. And I am only stubborn in football.”