Pedro Rodriguez has backtracked on his earlier comments that he could leave Chelsea to return to Barcelona this summer, insisting that such a move would be "almost impossible" only a year after leaving Camp Nou.
In an interview with beIN Sports, Pedro had refused to rule out the possibility of rejoining the club he left for Stamford Bridge in a £21 million deal last August, having grown disillusioned with a lack of first team opportunities.
But despite reiterating his love for Barcelona, where he won 11 major trophies in seven years, Pedro admits there are too many obstacles in the way of a potential return to the Spanish champions this summer.
"If you ask me if I'd go back, the answer is clear because they're a great club with great players and fans who appreciate me," the Spain attacker told RAC1. "I've always said that I'd like to retire at Barca, but I know it's very difficult, almost impossible.
"Admittedly it seemed like I was going back this summer, but I have a contract with Chelsea, I've only been there for a year and it'd be very difficult for [a return] to happen."
Asked why he spoke to Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu during last month's Copa del Rey final, Pedro replied: "We talked about the team, not me. When I left, he told me that the doors of the club would always be open, and I said that was very important for me because [Barca] are a club that I can feel. It's where I grew up and was happy."
Pedro is currently representing Spain at Euro 2016, but has been forced to accept a place on the substitutes' bench due to the form of Nolito, who has registered 25 goals and 20 assists for Celta Vigo over the last two seasons.
Nolito, like Pedro, left Barcelona in search of regular first team football and has been repeatedly linked with a return to Camp Nou, but the Chelsea winger believes his countryman would encounter the same difficulties if he chose to go back and compete for minutes with Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar.
"Nolito can fit in [at Barca], but I don't know whether he'd accept the situation of being a back-up," Pedro said. "He can work to earn his place, but it's difficult with the level of the three forwards [Messi, Suarez and Neymar], who are breaking records and playing all the time."