Fernando Llorente has hinted he would rather leave for Athletic Bilbao this summer than sign a new contract with Tottenham.

The Spaniard was heavily linked with a return to La Liga, mostly to his old club Bilbao, in the January transfer window but was forced to stay following Harry Kane’s injury and Son Heung-min’s absence due to the Asian Cup.

He has proved to be a useful player in recent weeks, providing important goals and assists including a later winner against Watford and what could turn out to be a crucial third against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.

But with his contract set to expire in the summer, Llorente will have a decision to make about extending his deal with Spurs – if the club offer him an extension – or potentially returning to Bilbao.

And if quotes from a recent Spanish interview are anything to go by, it sounds like Llorente would prefer the latter.

“There was a lot of talk about my possible departure to Athletic but seeing the injuries that Tottenham had, I knew it would be complicated,” Llorente told Radio Marca.

He added: “It would be nice to retire at Athletic.”

Having turned 34 this week, Llorente might not have many more seasons in him, so a return to Bilbao may need to happen sooner rather than later if he is to retire at his preferred destination.



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