Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho insists he never considered leaving the club, despite falling out with manager Brendan Rodgers earlier in the season, reports the Guardian.
The France defender is set to play in his first Merseyside derby this evening, having turned his Anfield career around in recent weeks.
Prior to the previous clash with Everton in September, Sakho stormed out of Anfield having been informed he was not even amongst the substitutes for the game, with Dejan Lovren starting and Kolo Toure selected as back up.
He was subsequently fined and left out by Rodgers, whilst injury shortly after meant he did not feature for the Reds again for another three months.
But since his return against Arsenal on December 22, Liverpool are unbeaten in the Premier League, and have also progressed to the fifth round of the FA Cup.
Sakho has excelled in a back three alongside Emre Can and long serving Martin Skrtel, and says his positive attitude helped him to turn his Liverpool career around.
“That was a bad moment for me, a difficult time,” the 24-year-old said of his derby omission.
“I felt bad but that is normal. I wanted to play, I want to play all the time and I was disappointed. It is the same for all the players – we want to play for the red shirt and, in a big game, it is important for us. I think it was natural that I was disappointed because I want to play for this shirt and I am ready to fight for the club.”
“I never doubted I would come back,” Sakho added. “I never thought to leave.
“I don’t know if I have proved I belong here, that is for others to decide. But I am happy, very happy at the club, and very happy with the team. I have two and a half years left on my contract and I never say I want to go. I am happy here in Liverpool, my family is happy and everything is settled for me. I like being at Liverpool.”