Oriol Romeu is fully-focused on helping Southampton as he prepares to make his first return to Stamford Bridge this weekend.
Romeu left Chelsea in the summer on a permanent basis in the summer to join Saints but, having spent the previous two seasons out on loan, it’s been a while since he played at Stamford Bridge – something he hopes to rectify on Saturday evening.
The midfielder joined Chelsea under André Villas-Boas and was limited to 22 league appearances in his first two seasons with the club before suffering an injury which ultimately curtailed his time in West London. Season-long loan moves to Valencia and VfB Stuttgart kept him away from Chelsea, but Romeu – who arrived in England from Barcelona – holds no regrets from his time at the Bridge.
“I think in football you are where you belong,” he explained to BBC Radio Solent. “You just have to think about your allegiances and not about what happened in the past.
“I had the injury of course, and a change of manager too, but I couldn’t change that and now I’m here and whatever in the past happened.
“It will be good to be back at Stamford Bridge where I played for two seasons. I was lucky to be there for those two seasons and it’s the chance to play against some old friends, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Chelsea are not currently in the sort of form that the Premier League has been accustomed to seeing in recent years, but the reigning champions still pose a dangerous threat, according to Romeu.
“We are all expecting them to be there fighting for the first place and they are not, but it’s six, seven games and they will be back,” said the midfielder.
“They have the players and the main ones from last season so the quality is there and they will be back I’m sure.
“They may not be playing the best football, but you are going there to do a job and you have to make sure you play well because if you don’t, then you will lose, for sure.
“We just have to think about our game and our performance that we did in our last game – we have to keep showing that and play at the same level.”
Romeu has made a solid start to his time at St Mary’s, and he believes there’s an abundance of quality in the Southampton squad which makes his task of playing every week a challenge that he is enjoying.
“That’s what every player wants to do,” he explained, “and when I go out there I want to do my best – and in training also – to show the coach that he can trust me and that he can play me in every game.
“I’m very happy and very pleased to be here. I’ve played six or seven games already with this amazing team and I’ve been playing more and more games in my legs. I want to play as much as I can, and be out there on the pitch.
“We played very well last weekend, but we still can improve and there are a lot of things that we can change to be better. What [Ronald Koeman] said last week was that we played very well, but we can do it better and we have to go for it because that’s what we’re aiming to do in every game.”