West Ham captain Scott Parker claims that the lure of Champions League football was never strong enough to tempt him to leave Upton Park.
Parker put an end to speculation surrounding his future by signing a new contract that will tie him to the club until at least the end of the 2013-14 season.
The news will come as a big relief to Hammers fans, who had feared losing their skipper to local rivals Tottenham after they had a £7million bid for the 29-year-old rejected last month.
Parker, who joined the club from Newcastle in 2007, is a firm fans' favourite and is so highly rated by co-chairman David Sullivan that he professed last year that his skipper was the only member of the entire Hammers squad that he would not consider selling.
A move across London to Spurs would have given Parker the opportunity of playing in the Champions League but he insisted yesterday that his love for West Ham is so strong that leaving the east London outfit never crossed his mind.
"With the transfer window there is all this big hype," Parker told http://www.whufc.com.
"There are obviously times when it is stressful but from the outset I always knew this was where I was going to be.
"The owners came out and spoke last season and I am more than happy here.
"Everyone knows I enjoy playing my football here. I really wanted to stay here, give it a shot and see what can happen."
Parker's bullish performances at the heart of the Hammers' midfield ensured that the club steered clear of relegation last season.
Former manager Gianfranco Zola may have taken the blame for the club's poor performances but his replacement, Avram Grant, has found life difficult so far.
Three Barclays Premier League defeats, and a narrow victory over Oxford in the Carling Cup, have left fans with a sense of unease about the club's survival chances.
To make matters worse, a daunting clash with Barclays Premier League champions Chelsea awaits them on Saturday.
But Parker insists that it will be only a matter of time before Grant hauls the team off the bottom of the table.
"We have had a tough start. In saying that, we have shown some good things this year but we need to do that for 90 minutes," Parker said.
"I am sure that it won't be long before we start clicking and you can see the best of us.
"There is no question that we have got a good squad of players.
"There is no hiding the fact that we need to try and pick up some points.
"In the Premier League there never seems to be an easy game - whenever you're looking for one, the next game that comes along is never easy."Reuse content