The Chinese football revolution is here to stay with a host of top stars now following the money and leaving behind the lure of Champions League football.
And now La Gazzetta dello Sport (via the Daily Mail) are reporting that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could be the target of a £128 million move to Chinese Super League side Shanghai SIPG.
The Gabon international has been in flying form for Borussia Dortmund so far this season, scoring an impressive 20 goals in 22 appearances.
The German club have, however, denied any truth in reports that the player will depart for China.
Dortmund spokesman Sascha Fligge was quick to quell any rumours, when speaking to German outlet DPA:
“Borussia Dortmund has nothing on the table regarding this matter and we do not deal with hypothetical things.”
Axel Witsel has also joined the growing list of international stars making the move to the Super League, with Atletico Madrid’s Jackson Martinez, Tottenham’s Paulinho, former Arsenal striker Gervinho, former Newcastle man Demba Ba and ex-Chelsea star Ramires having already made the move.
The Chinese Super League is now competing with the Premier League and other European divisions for the top targets and will have an impact as clubs such as Arsenal, who are struggling to tie down both Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez to long-term deals, if they cannot match or better the money that will be on offer if players decide to move to China.
While the standard of football may not be as appealing as other leagues, the CSL is growing and the money on offer will continue to attract top names making it less of a shock if top internationals such as Aubameyang reject the advances of the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester City for the Super League.
Damien McEvoy Pundit Arena