"This really was not an easy choice – and that is putting it mildly," said Steven Defour after joining RSC Anderlecht, rivals of his former club R. Standard de Liège.
RSC Anderlecht have signed Steven Defour for a reported €6.5m from FC Porto.
The 26-year-old midfielder has agreed a deal running until summer 2019 with Anderlecht. His new club clinched a third straight Belgian title last season to ensure another UEFA Champions League group campaign.
Defour, capped 44 times by Belgium, made his professional debut at KRC Genk and won two championships at Anderlecht's arch-rivals R. Standard de Liège. He went to FC Porto in 2011 and twice helped them top the Liga.
"This really was not an easy choice – and that is putting it mildly," said Defour, who played at this summer's FIFA World Cup. "I respect Standard and their fans. I have had some fantastic years there, but you have to make choices in life every now and then. I had to think about myself and I was determined to play, which I did not do enough at Porto.
"At Anderlecht I will get the chance to find that joy of playing football again. That is why I did not have to think too long about this choice. The desire to play is huge, that was the most important thing to me. And that the club plays in the Champions League is also important for me to prove myself."