New Watford signing John Eustace has admitted he would have liked to stay at Stoke.
The midfielder joined The Hornets on a two-and-a-half year deal on transfer deadline day for an initial fee of £250,000.
He had spent over four years with The Potters and had wanted to stay for longer.
But Stoke were not keen to tie Eustace to a long-term commitment and he insists he had no option but to leave for a new challenge.
"I tried to sort out a contract at Stoke a couple of weeks ago, but they never got back to me," Eustace told the Sentinel.
"I've had a lot of injuries in my career and was going to be out of contract at the end of the season.
"I think the club would have waited until then before offering anything, but I could have got injured before then and so needed the security Watford were offering.
"I'm gutted I've left, I would have loved to have stayed at Stoke.
"I definitely want Stoke to get promoted this year, I'm sincere about that."