As former Zenith striker and Brazil international, Hulk completes a £46.1million switch to Chinese side, Shanghai SIPG, he joins a host of popular football stars on the Asian continent. The super rich league continues to attract players and coaches of high quality, and it’s slowly becoming a football giant. Here are 10 popular faces that adorn the Asian league.
The former PSG forward moved to China to link up with Hebei China Fortune for a rumoured £23.5million despite being courted by a couple of top-flight European sides. And the move didn’t affect his chances with the national team. He was part of the Copa America squad but picked up an injury and was unable to appear in the finals.
Fondly remembered for jeopardizing Liverpool’s chances of landing their first ever EPL title after his goal following Gerrard’s slip, the former Chelsea and Newcastle forward switched to Besiktas at the end of the 2013/2014 season. The Senegalese star then moved to Shanghai Shenhua last summer where he is scoring some goals every now and then.
The ex-Porto goalscoring machine joined Guangzhou Evergrande for £31million in January after flopping at Atletico Madrid. Martinez’s 67 goals in 89 games for the Portuguese side made him an hot cake, but it remains unknown if he will ever be recalled by Colombia after the Chinese move. But given the fact that he’s under the tutelage of former Chelsea and Brazil coach, Felipe Scolari, he’s not completely done with top form. Scolari on the other hand has recorded success with the side, winning the 2015 Chinese Super League and AFC Champions League. He has also expressed he could accept the England offer if it comes his way.
The Ghana international spent a while at Sunderland before moving to the middle East to join Al Ain. He now plies his trade at Shanghai SIPG where he reportedly earns £227,000-a-week. He’s being by former England manager, Sven-Goran Eriksson. Eriksson was reportedly hoping to lure Rooney from United last year.
The former Inter Milan and Newcastle United striker who is best known for his thundering strikes now plays for Shanghai Shenhua. The globetrotting ex Nigeria international also once played for Levante and Seattle Sounders recently
The 2014 World Cup star now lines up for Guangzhou Evergrande. A disappointing time at North London side, Tottenham was a low point in the career of the once promising Corinthian’s midfielder.
The Brazilian striker and former Manchester City player couldn’t live up to expectations after a promising start back at home. He now turns out for Chinese side, Jiangsu Suning.
The midfielder cum striker was close to moving to Anfield during the Winter transfer window from Shakhtar Donetsk. But for reasons best known to him, he chose a £38million move to Jiangsu Suning.
The former Chelsea defensive midfielder wasn’t able to get considerable amount of playing time at the Stamford Bridge hence a decision to leave by January. He moved to Jiangsu Suning for £25million.
The ex Ivory Coast forward once turned out for Arsenal before switching to AS Roma where he enjoyed football to the fullest. He later move to Hebei China Fortune for £13.7million.