Kovacic criticises distant relationship with Mancini

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Real Madrid midfielder Mateo Kovacic claims he did not feel wanted by Roberto Mancini at Inter.

Croatia international Kovacic moved from Inter to Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in August, having only joined the Serie A giant in January 2013.

Mancini returned for his second spell as Inter coach in November 2014 but, despite being one of the star performers at the San Siro, Kovacic told Sportske Novosti that his relationship with the former Manchester City boss was distant.

"I am not sure, did Mancini want me in Inter or not?" he said. "We had no relationship; not good, not bad. I don't know what he thought and in the end I was glad to leave because I don't know what would have happened to me.

"Mancini never told me anything. In fact, he did, when I was leaving, he told me he was sorry that I am going. But, honestly, I never saw or felt that while I was in Inter."

Kovacic also took exception to being moved around and played in a variety of positions for Inter, stating his preference for a central midfield role.

"I prefer playing as a holding midfielder," he said. "I've played offensive midfielder, left winger, but that was not bad, now I know how to play that too.

"But, I believe Inter made a mistake with me moving me and changing my natural position."