DEPARTING striker Daniel Nardiello says it appeared Exeter City could not compete with Rotherham United's finances, after agreeing to join the Millers.
The forward says Grecians manager Paul Tisdale did not even get as far as putting a new contract proposal to Nardiello when the pair met to discuss terms last week, after hearing of the offers that were on the table for the 29-year-old elsewhere.
Nardiello, who was City's top scorer this season with 11 goals, said: "I don't know if they (Exeter) could compete with the offer from Rotherham. I spoke to the gaffer and told him what I had been offered by a few clubs. Paul said I should take one of the offers as he was not sure he could match them.
"I'm not sure what the whole scenario there is. I know they wanted to keep me and I would have loved to have stayed. It was just I had an offer and Exeter weren't in a position to do anything about it.
"Exeter didn't really offer me anything as such. There was a cut in the wage budget so I knew it was going to be difficult (to agree terms). The manager was fine with it and we left on good terms."
Nardiello says he had a number of offers to choose from and even had the opportunity to stay in npower League One.
But the chance to move north and closer to family, as well as the ambition United are showing, meant Nardiello was keen to join the Yorkshire club on the two-year deal they offered him.
"Rotherham seemed the right decision," the former Blackpool man said. "Being closer to my wife's family helps and she wanted to be closer to home...it was a mixture of a few things.
"I know the manager (Steve Evans) is looking to bring some more new faces in and we will look to try and get promotion, either automatically or through the play-offs.
"We will give it a good go."
Nardiello says he is already looking forward to facing City next season, especially as he believes his old club will be one of those vying with Rotherham for promotion.
While their playing budget may be lower than in previous years Nardiello believes the Grecians will still have a palpable chance of challenging at the top end of League Two, especially with Tisdale in charge and his former Blackpool teammate Alan Gow among the ranks.
Nardiello said: "Paul is one of the best managers I have worked for. He tries to play the right way. He has limited resources when compared to other clubs but he gets the best out of the players.
"The respect he has for the players stood out too. He always listens to you and respects your opinion.
"I think Exeter will be up there with Rotherham next year, especially with Alan Gow signing. He is an outstanding player, a Championship-standard player at least, so he is a great capture for Exeter.
"The manager is proven and I hope a lot of the lads will stay and the club can push on."
As for the memories he will take from Exeter, one in particular stands out for Nardiello – his last-minute winning goal for the Grecians against their bitter rivals Plymouth Argyle in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy tie at Home Park in 2010.
"The goal against Plymouth is up there among my best experiences. It was such a big game, against our local rivals, and to score the winner so late on makes it one of my best nights in football," Nardiello said.