John Obi Mikel has revealed why he opted to join Championship side Middlesbrough despite other offers from top clubs across Europe.
The Nigerian international who was unveiled official as Boro player on Thursday, January 24, stressed that the club's ambition and mentality were the main reasons that influenced his decision to make the switch.
The 31-year-old Mikel, who spent 11 years at Chelsea before joining Chinese Super League side Tianjin TEDA in 2017 also applauded the hearty conversation he had with club boss Tony [Pulis], before signing the dotted lines.
"For me it's looking at the project," he said.
"I spoke to a few clubs and I also spoke to Tony [Pulis], had a good chat with him.
"He's told me where he wants to go with it and it definitely fits with what I want to do.
"The club wants to get promoted so hopefully I'm here to help in any way I can.
"It's a family club and this is what I want. I like stability and this is why I was at Chelsea for a very long time,"
added Mikel, who claimed the Premier League silverware twice, Champions League and Europa League medal during his stay at west London.
Speaking further, Mikel, who can be deployed as a defensive or attacking midfielder insists he is ready for the challenges ahead as the team always comes first.
"We have to put our heads together and help each other," he said.
"If anyone knows me from my years at Chelsea, I always played for the team. The team comes first and that's exactly what I'm going to do here.
"Here is going to be a challenge, but I love challenges," Mikel summed up.