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18th Dec 2016

Here’s why Wayne Rooney appears to have ruled out a transfer to China

Rooney's team have been on a "fact-finding mission" to China...

Robert Redmond

Wayne Rooney probably won’t be the next big football star to move to the Chinese Super League, if this is anything to go by.

The Manchester United captain has been linked with a move to Asian country in recent months, and reportedly turned down a chance to join Beijing Guoan, who are said to have met with his agent over a possible transfer.

The move didn’t happen, and Rooney is under contract until 2019 at Old Trafford, but it would be understandable if he was to have his head turned by the riches on offer in China.

Oscar, who is set to join Shanghai SIPG next month for £60m from Chelsea, will earn a reported salary of £400,000 a week – after tax.

The Brazilian midfielder is also only 25-years-old, and about to enter the peak years of his career. He could have easily found another club in one of Europe’s top leagues.

The same can’t be said about Rooney, who appears to be in decline and not the player he was a few seasons ago.

If the 31-year-old was to leave United before his current contract expires, it arguably won’t be to a team in another European country who are fighting for titles or competing in the Champions League.


Wherever Rooney ends up, it appears he won’t be going to China.

Daniel Taylor, the chief football writer for The Guardian and The Observer, writes that Rooney’s advisers have already been to China to explore the possibility of a move, and the report wasn’t favourable to the country’s league.

Taylor writes that, other than the incredible financial benefits, Rooney has heard little else positive about the Chinese Super League.

His advisors, on their fact-finding mission earlier this year, “reported back that the pitches were appalling, the standard was as bad as everyone thought, and the referees even worse, in a league blackened by tales of match-fixing and bribery.”

It’s possible that the massive financial package on offer in the league might make Rooney look beyond the league’s problems, as it has for other famous players.

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