Figo felt he was pensioned off by Spain as he enjoyed a late career swansong in Italy with Inter Milan.
“At 32, I was ‘dead’ for many people and I was lucky to choose well and to be happy for four years at Inter by winning four Leagues,” he said.
“It is the mentality in Spain, it is slightly negative compared to in Italy, where the fans, media and clubs judge you on your performance. In Spain, from the age of 31, you are already over.
“In Italy, the difference is in this – look at the transfers of Inter, Milan and Juventus. They have players at 30, 32 still playing because their performance is good.
“Andrea Pirlo left Inter, went to Milan and then at 30-odd years went to Juventus and remains a leader in his team.
“They do not crush you if you have a bad game by saying, ‘hey, you’re dead and it is because you are 30’. You have to look at the performance and then talk.
“That is a reality that exists in Spain, whilst in Italy they have found a way out for people to stay happy and keep playing. It was very important in my decision that I found happiness.”
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