Cole Palmer says he had only ever left Manchester on holidays or away games before signing for Chelsea, as he reflects on the ‘huge decision’ to leave Manchester City.
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The 21-year-old came through the youth ranks with the Premier League champions and looked set to have a breakout season in their first team.
After the departure of Riyad Mahrez, Palmer scored in both the Community Shield and UEFA Super Cup, making a good case for a more regular place in Pep Guardiola’s side.
However, after making just 19 Premier League appearances for his boyhood club he has moved to Stamford Bridge, with the Blues splashing out an initial £40m on his services and handing him a seven-year contract.
Palmer made his debut in the Premier League defeat to Nottingham Forest and hopes to get plenty more chances to impress Mauricio Pochettino.
There is no real guarantee that he will get more game time at Chelsea than he would have at Manchester City, but that is what he is hoping for and that the big move to west London was all worthwhile.
‘I’m not saying I shied away from the competition (for places at City) because I’ve never done that,’ Palmer said. ‘I’d been there (around the first team) for a few years and wanted more of an opportunity to play – in my position and to have more of an impact.
‘It was a huge decision. When I left the training ground on the Thursday I knew I was going to London the next day. It all just hit me, sat in the car and going to drive out. I was just thinking, “you’ve been here 15 years”.
‘I don’t know any different. I’ve never been on loan. I’ve never moved out of Manchester. The only time I’ve ever been outside of Manchester is on holiday or away games. Going there does feel weird, but there is no time to waste. I’ve got to get to it.’
Palmer is on international duty with England Under-21s this week, starting and scoring in the 3-0 win over Luxembourg on Monday and he will hope to be involved when Chelsea travel to Bournemouth in the Premier League on Sunday.
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