Nicolas Anelka has revealed he is using Manchester City as a springboard to ultimately secure a move to a bigger club.
The French striker has proved a huge success since joining City from Paris Saint Germain in the summer of 2002, including a 20-goal haul this season.
He admits he has improved considerably during his time in Kevin Keegan's side and recently acknowledged City are receiving the best of his talents.
But the 24-year-old has claimed that City are a platform for him to use as a step towards displaying his skills on a greater stage again.
Anelka is unsure where he wants to parade his wares, having already played for Arsenal, Real Madrid and Liverpool.
The quick-silver forward has ruled out a switch to City's arch-rivals Manchester United and also does not want to return to playing in France.
"Of course, Manchester City are not Real or Arsenal but it is a step in my career, not even a step but a test," Anelka told L'Equipe.
"I wanted to prove things with my club. Just before joining, everyone thought I would sign for Liverpool.
"I had a good relationship with Gerard Houllier but in the end, he took a decision and it was not to keep me.
"Considering all I have experienced at City, in football and life in general, I have learnt and improved a lot.
"It is a springboard but we have not talked about anything yet.
"I am ready to play for a great club again and I don't have a favourite. For England, it will be difficult as I have already played at Arsenal and Liverpool and it is impossible to go to Manchester United as both clubs don't negotiate together.
"Of course, I won't come back to France. In France, people don't understand anything. They just see money.
"In England, they are fans first and they don't criticise so easily."