£9.9m Paulinho transfer shows Tottenham chairman Levy ahead of the game

Chinese football is flush with money, and Tottenham have already taken advantage.

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has a reputation for being shrewd in the transfer market, and one deal in particular stands out over the past year.

Spurs sold Brazilian midfielder Paulinho to Chinese side Guangzhao Evergrande for £9.9 million back in July, at least double what his performances for the club suggested his value should be.

The club of course paid £17 million to sign Paulinho from Corinthians two years earlier, with the move failing to work out.

Yet managing to recoup more than half of this amount had to go down as a success, and the reason they were able to do so was because they were selling to a league which is not placing realistic monetary value on players.

The Chinese economy is booming, and investment in their football league is following suit, with an aim of buying big name players from abroad to attract substantial interest to fill stadia and increase the quality level.

Levy's actions in selling Paulinho to Guangzhao last summer show the chairman was ahead of the game, with activity really stepping up over the past month.

Jackson Martinez, Ramires, and Alex Teixeira are among the players to clinch big money moves, and more are expected to follow, even if a £38 million interest in West Ham's Dmitri Payet, reported by SkySports, is likely to be unsuccessful.

Now it could be argued that Spurs could have earned even more for Paulinho if they had sold him this January instead, but retaining him would have meant continuing to pay his £55,000 per week wages and keeping an unhappy player at the club.

It's only a shame from Tottenham's point of view they could not persuade Emmanuel Adebayor to clinch a move to China, netting a huge fee, instead of releasing him but continuing to pay a portion of his wages, even while he plays for Crystal Palace.


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