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Chinese Super League 2017

‘Do you love money or football?’ Why Yaya Toure says he’ll never play in China

The Manchester City star says he wants to continue in the Premier League for several years

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 24 January, 2017, 10:56am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 24 January, 2017, 10:59am

Manchester City’s Yaya Toure says he’d never move to China, branding those big names who have as money-grabbers.

The 33-year-old earns more than £200,000 a week at City. His agent claims he turned down opportunities to double or even triple that in China.

Asked if a move to China appealed he told the English press, “Me? No. I’m still looking young, right?

“I want to play in Europe, especially in England. I want to continue doing that for a few years yet.

“I always say that if I went to China I would end up feeling angry there.

“Do you play football because you love football or do you play because you want to make money?

“Me, I just want to play football because I enjoy it. I love playing. I enjoy helping my team-mates, I enjoy playing against the big players and teams.”

Toure said he was taking inspiration from Zlatan Ibrahimovic, starring across town at Manchester United.

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“Look at my friend Ibrahimovic. He’s 35 and he’s going to play for maybe… three more years?”

”He’s got the same mentality as me. He’s a big player, a champion who loves football. It’s football first.

“Anything after that is a bonus. You can be lucky to go and play for big clubs and still earn a lot of money. But those who go to China… I don’t think like that.”

China’s football clubs have shocked world football in the last two transfer windows with a massive transfer spending spree, but the floodgates seem to have been closed after the Chinese FA announced sweeping new rules.