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China Transfers Hit New Record Despite Crackdown

Chinese clubs splashed a record 388 million euros ($411 million) on footballers in the January-February transfer window despite an official crackdown on spending, with Oscar’s heavyweight move to Shanghai SIPG leading the way.

 

 

In spite of moves to curb “irrational” expenditure, China’s top tier beat last year’s record of 345 million euros and outstripped the English Premier League’s winter spending (259 million euros) for the second year in a row, according to industry website transfermarkt.com.

Chelsea midfielder Oscar’s Asian-record, 60-million-euro move to Shanghai SIPG reportedly made him the world’s second highest paid player — behind Carlos Tevez, who joined city rivals Shanghai Shenhua.

 

 

Rumoured moves for Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney failed to materialise but Axel Witsel and Alexandre Pato were among other big names to join the Chinese Super League, while Zhang Chengdong became China’s most expensive player.
One of the biggest surprises was out-of-favour Watford striker Odion Ighalo’s 23.3m euro move to Changchun Yatai, which made him the sixth biggest transfer in Super League history.

 

 

Oscar and Tevez moved before the Chinese Football Association announced a raft of cooling measures, including caps on transfer fees and wages and restricting match-day squads to three foreign players instead of four.

It seems to have stopped some mega-deals in their tracks, with Tianjin Quanjian’s chairman saying the club had dropped bids for Diego Costa, Edinson Cavani, Radamel Falcao and Raul Jimenez as a result.

However, the new curbs didn’t dry up spending completely with players continuing to cash in on China’s football boom.

Photo Credit: 
AFP

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