Chinese Super League continues to make headlines in the football world. Just days after it was confirmed that Brazilian playmaker Oscar had signed for Shanghai SIPG, it has been reported that Guangzhou Evergrande are interested in the signature of Barcelona and Turkey midfielder Arda Turan.
The Chinese side are willing to offer a fee in the regions of 40 million for the Turkish international, who moved to Camp Nou last summer from rivals Atletico Madrid. Guangzhou had made an attempt to sign Turan earlier in the summer, only to be rebuffed by the Blaugrana, and now have returned with a better offer. Guangzhou, managed by former Brazil boss Luiz Felipe Scolari, have former Atletico Madrid striker Jackson Martinez in their ranks as well.
Turan has netted ten goals for the Catalans this term – only Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez have scored more – after having made his debut for Barca in January this year, due to the registration ban that had been imposed on the Catalan team. But now with a big money move to China on cards, should Turan go through with the transfer? No.
It has become a trend nowadays, players moving to China for huge sums of money. In the summer, we saw Southampton striker Graziano Pelle make the move whereas many Brazilian players have moved to China in recent times, Hulk and Ramires a few notable names among them. The move offers great financial benefits for the player, with huge wages on offer. But looking at it from a football point of view, the transfer makes absolutely no sense.
Turan, at 29, still has a good period of top-class football left in him and has recently began to gain prominence in Barcelona colours. There had been growing frustrations at the seemingly lack of playing time earlier in the season, but that has changed now and Turan is regularly involved in the Catalans’ first team and is slowly establishing himself as a key player for Luis Enrique. In fact, Turan led Barcelona to a 7-0 thrashing against Hercules in the Copa Del Rey last week, scoring a fine hat-trick in the game.
And even if the 29-year old is unhappy with the playing time afforded to him at the Camp Nou, he still has a horde of potential suitors in Europe, with English bigwigs Arsenal a long-term interested party.
Turan may have won the La Liga with the Catalans and with Atletico previously, but is still yet to taste the Champions League glory and if he decides to move to China, he will never be able to realize the dream of getting his hands on European club football’s premiere trophy.
While the move to China will most likely see him earn double or triple the wages he currently makes with Barcelona, the financial aspect shouldn’t be the only consideration. At his age, joining Guangzhou will lead to a lot of questions over his ambitions and his aspirations. And there may be a good chance of his reduced involvement with the Turkish national team, as has been the case with several Brazilian players plying their trade in China, if he goes through with the transfer. Keeping in mind all the aspects, it only seems right that Turan reject a move to Asia and stay with Barcelona where he is growing into a vital player.