After Diego Costa’s move to the Chinese Super League never materialised, Stamford Bridge is no longer ‘out of bounds’ for the Spaniard.
The growing influence of China’s top flight is set to question the integrity of even the most club-loyal players in the near future. For instance, Dimitri Payet showed his true colours earlier this month, and now rightly rots in the U23 squad.
Through lack of ability, rather than loyalty, Manchester City players feature strongly in our future Chinese Super League XI. They take their place along with several other big-name castaways and want-aways.
The most obvious name first. This man simply cannot cut the mustard under Pep Guardiola. After City’s 4-0 capitulation at Everton on 15th January, he became the latest object of ridicule on social media. Image Source: Twitter
With first-team places at a premium, just 399 minutes of league football in 2016/17 is way below the quota Sam Byram needs to become a fully fledged player at the top. Image Source: Twitter
Sakho’s attitude is dreadful, with even the most ardent Liverpool fans now struggling to believe in him. A change is sorely needed if the Frenchman is ever to regain what little talent he once had. Image Source: Twitter
John Stones will never be the “next Bobby Moore” or “next Franz Beckenbauer”. At present, he is looking more like the next Carlton Palmer. Image Source: Twitter
It’s not going to happen. Ever. Some things were just not meant to be. Shaw’s only option is a thorough change of air, and he will find Newcastle a step across – rather than a step down. Image Source: Twitter
Xhaka’s playing style is not widely favoured in the Premier League, and a move to China would give him greater license to unleash his wrath. Image Source: Twitter
Cabaye is not a Sam Allardyce player. He will soon be at an optimal age to explore pastures new. Image Source: Twitter
Men like Payet are the worst example for younger players in the Premier League, where loyalty is concerned.
On paper, Sterling should be the saviour of his club and country. On grass, he is nothing more than a sprinter, incapable of playing in adverse conditions against a high defensive line. Image Source: Twitter
Walcott has enjoyed more good days than bad in 11 years under Wenger. However, he has still fallen well short of his true potential in north London. Image Source: Twitter
A recent run of just two goals in thirteen Premier League games has cast fresh doubt on the equivalent of the school playground hogger. Image Source: Twitter
The custodian Claudio Bravo is arguably the most prominent nominee for our future Chinese Super League XI.
A recent run of 14 goals conceded from 22 shots is a record even the legendary Massimo Taibi would find farcical. Overall, China would represent a better learning curve for the Chilean.
Newly rich and awash with proven Premier League managers, the Chinese Super League does not yet have the influence it threatens. Already, there have been snubs from Wayne Rooney and Yaya Toure, but the deluge is coming.
It will arrive sooner than many think.