Despite failure with Bale, Chinese clubs are ready to spend big again

21 August 2019

Photo: Getty Images Although Gareth Bale’s transfer to China failed it seems like the willingness to spend at that level is back in China

Chinese interest in Gareth Bale marks end of fiscal restraint.

Lack of international success is behind change in strategy.

Henrik Lønne

Just a few years ago the football world saw Chinese clubs splashing out on players like Oscar, Hulk, Axel Witsel, Alexandre Pato, Jonathan Soriano and Carlos Tévez.

In the 2016/17 season Chinese clubs spent an unprecedented sum with 12 transfers costing more than £10 million per player going into the league. Since then, however, activity has gone down with only five transfers getting over the £10 million mark in the two following seasons. This slowdown made many people wonder if it was the end of the Chinese transfer bonanza. 

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