European Premier League

Are footballers who move to China money-grabbing mercenaries?

They’re wasting their short careers 

Money ruined football a long time ago but the latest trend of footballers in their prime deciding to move to play in the Chinese “top” division is ludicrous. It shouldn’t come as a surprise considering FIFA and everything linked to the most watched game in the world is dripping in cash.

Up until the recent astronomical transfer fees paid by top Chinese clubs, the only time a quality player would move outside of Europe was in the twilight of their career. Henry heading to New York or Robbie Keane to L.A. You couldn’t blame them as they’d reached a point where they couldn’t compete at the top level. The only exception was Beckham but he was busy in the States building an international brand.

Ramires, Jackson Martinez and Teixeira are three players in their mid-late twenties. Reaching their prime footballing years, their eyes should be on prizes like the Champions League. Instead they have decided to double or triple their salary in return for enjoying any meaningful achievements in their career. They’re already making millions a year. Why do they choose to sacrifice playing in the world’s best leagues to move to a life of football obscurity? Money. Huge sums of money from a “communist” country. It’s wrong on so many levels.

It’s just a better job offer

All this criticism leveled at footballers for accepting deals in China is idiotic. This wouldn’t be an issue in nearly any other industry. If a nurse or a customer service agent was offered three times their salary to move abroad, would there be an uproar? Being a footballer is a job first and foremost. Players have a limited time to earn as much money as possible so who can begrudge them for accepting a lucrative contract?

As more players make the move to China, the league will start to attract attention and this will have a snowball effect. Beckham was ridiculed for going to L.A Galaxy but his time there can only be viewed as a success. More players should look to broaden their horizons by moving abroad.

What’s the big deal about staying in Europe anyway? Should Texiera have insisted on going to Liverpool? The perennial underachievers who will most likely not qualify for the Champions League next year. He’ll earn double Liverpool’s offer by playing in China and will probably have a far greater chance of winning silverware. There’s very little loyalty left in football but there’s a short supply of loyalty in any industry nowadays. The company/club offering the most money normally wins and we shouldn’t give out when it happens in football.

Tell us what you think!


  1. It’s just a feckin’ job. There’s no guarantee that by moving to England, you’ll even qualify for the Champions League. Why not triple your wages and experience an amazing new culture?

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