Alex Teixeira: Shakhtar midfielder in 50m euro move to China

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By BBC.

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The Chinese transfer record has been broken for the third time in 10 days after Jiangsu Suning spent £38.4m on Alex Teixeira.

 

The Brazil midfielder had been a target for Premier League side Liverpool but has become the Chinese Super League’s latest high-profile recruit.

 

Ex-Chelsea midfielder Ramires was signed by Jiangsu Suning for £25m.

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That was followed by Jackson Martinez’s £31m move to Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao from Atletico Madrid.

 

The total outlay on those three players is just over £94m (122m euros).

 

How much have CSL clubs spent?

According to the transfermarkt website, which tracks commercial dealings in the sport, they have spent £199.5m (258.9m euros) in their current transfer window, which runs until 26 February.

 

That total could rise, with more big signings expected.China-2014-2015-adidas-Home-Kit

 

In contrast, Premier League clubs spent £175m (227m euros) in their window, which closed earlier this week.

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Their costliest signing was the £18.3m that Stoke City paid for Porto midfielder Giannelli Imbula.

 

Liverpool had been closely linked with a move for Teixera, 26, during the January transfer window.

 

Shakhtar Donetsk claimed they rejected a £24m offer from the Reds for the attacking midfielder before agreeing to sell him to Jiangsu.

 

The CSL season gets under way in early March.

 

Why are they spending big sums?

According to Rowan Simons, a Beijing-based football reporter, interest and investment in football has been “growing for five years”.

 

He also says it is politically motivated, backed by the President of the People’s Republic of China.

 

China-Super-League“President Xi is a big football fan,” Simons told BBC World. “There has been a huge and unprecedented football revolution in China led by him, which has turned the game on its head.”

 

Simons said schools were focusing more on football, adding: “It was seen that football was only useful if it was carried on into a profession.

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“It’s no longer just seen as a profession. It’s an incredible transformation.”

 

What do Premier League clubs think?

The recent spate of signings has started to attract attention in Britain.

 

Asked if the Premier League should be concerned about the CSL’s spending power, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger replied: “Yes, of course.

 

“China looks to have the financial power to move the whole league of Europe to China.”

 

However, he wondered whether CSL clubs would continue to pay out huge sums of money on transfer fees.

 

“Will they sustain their desire to do it?” he asked. “Let’s remember, Japan started to do it a few years ago but slowed down.

 

“I don’t know how deep the desire in China is. If it is a very strong political desire, we should worry.”

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What’s it like to play in China?

Paul Gascoigne, Didier Drogba and Nicola Anelka have all experienced football in China, which has a population 1.3bn.

 

So has former Nottingham Forest and West Ham striker Marlon Harewood, who spoke to the BBC’s World Service about his time there.

 

“China has a lot of wealth and they love their football,” he said. “They want to make it even bigger and bring bigger names in.chin celeb

 

“There’s not many countries that can compete with the top names in Europe, but they are trying to compete.

 

“By bringing in players like Martinez and others, they are trying to bring the standard to that level. It’s not far off.

 

“The money counts, but at the same time it’s an absolute experience.

 

“The experience I had was amazing. I would definitely recommend it, even if they just try it for an experience. I know they would love it.”

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