Llorente won't sign Bilbao deal
Llorente eyes Bilbao exit
By Mark Kendall & Graeme Baileu. Last Updated: August 13, 2012 2:09pm
Fernando Llorente: Won't sign new deal at Athletic Bilbao
Athletic Bilbao club president Josu Urrutia has confirmed that Fernando Llorente has told him he will not sign a new contract and wants to leave.
Llorente has just one year left on his current deal at San Mames, and Bilbao had hoped he would sign an extension.
However, after returning to Spain following his involvement in Euro 2012, he informed Bilbao that he did not see his future with the club.
"We spoke with him during last season and made him see how important it was that he renewed (his contract)," Urrutia revealed at a news conference.
"He told us that after the European Championships he would let us know and ten days ago I received a call and his agents told me that there was no financial reason for him to continue (with Athletic), but what was even more important for him was to have the guarantee of challenging for championships and success.
"I let him know how disappointed I was but he told me the decision was final."
Juventus stated on Sunday that they had opened talks amid claims they had made a €16million offer but Bilbao insist that they will not take anything less than his release clause which is €36million.
"I am not speaking with any clubs because Athletic is not a selling club," he insisted.
"For him to leave Athletic, the player has not to want to be with us and the clubs that want him have to pay the release clause in his contract.
"Aside from that, for us it's a totally negative response and it's a blow to Athletic and a massive institutional failure because our reason for being is to compete in a different way.
"I still want Llorente to stay here. In interviews and recordings he has said that he wants to stay. Now he has told me that he wants to go. I think everyone will have done everything they could.
"It's not a case of throwing in the towel, it's that the player has told me the decision is final. During the last year the feeling was that questions could have led us to an economic agreement and now it seems that is not the case."