Ander Herrera is flattered by Manchester United's failed deadline-day bid but admits it would have been difficult to have enticed him away from Athletic Bilbao had negotiations over a proposed move got that far.
Herrera broke his silence today over the transfer saga which saw United's late bid to sign the 24-year-old before the transfer window closed end in failure and a degree of farce on Monday night.
United saw an initial offer for Herrera rejected by Athletic last week, while the club insisted that if the Red Devils wanted their man they would have to pay the release clause in his contract of around €36million.
David Moyes' side were still being linked with Herrera right up until the close of the transfer window but no move was forthcoming.
Speaking today, Herrera insisted he had not had talks with United, but admitted the English side might have struggled to turn his head anyway.
He said: "Obviously when United make an offer for you it's very flattering and I'm very grateful, but I'm very happy with Athletic.
"I didn't pass a medical as has been said. Athletic have made things clear in an honest way from the start.
"When United make an offer for you it's very flattering and I'm very grateful"
"In the first place the club have to pay the clause, which is 36 million euros for me, and then attract me more than Athletic do, which is very difficult.
"It's totally false that an agreement was reached with me. To talk with me they would've had to pay the clause."
Asked if he felt let down at all by United, Herrera said: "Not at all. How am I going to feel mistreated when a club of the level of United make a formal offer?
"I'm grateful for that and also because Athletic have not wanted to negotiate, as that shows how they value their players.
"It makes me proud that one of the leading clubs in the world are interested in me.
"It shows that I'm doing things well."
The farce of the proposed transfer came on Monday night when reports emerged that three people said to be representing the Red Devils had turned up at the Spanish league headquarters, seemingly to meet the clause in the former Real Zaragoza player's contract.
The trio left an hour later, apparently unable to complete the paperwork required to finalise the deal.
However, it then transpired that United, who dealt directly with Athletic, knew nothing of the trio's existence.
When asked about that, Herrera said: "They were nothing to do with me, you'll have to ask them. They don't represent me nor do I know who they are."