23 Dec And the Oscar goes to China
Chelsea have announced they have agreed terms with Shanghai SIPG for the permanent transfer of midfielder Oscar.
The 25-year-old will join the Chinese Super League side at the beginning of the January transfer window after four-and-a-half years with the Blues.
During that time the Brazil international has won the Premier League, Europa League and League Cup but, more recently, he has found his chances limited under new boss Antonio Conte.
A fee has not been announced by the Premier League side but the deal is understood to be around £52million, with Oscar reportedly earning £400,000 a week.
A statement on Chelsea’s official website read: “We thank Oscar for his wonderful service and wish him the very best of luck for the future.”
Oscar will join former Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas at Shanghai SIPG and is the latest big name to move to China.
Ex-Blues striker Demba Ba is at Shanghai Shenhua while Graziano Pelle swapped Southampton for Shandong Luneng in July for a reported £13million.
Ramires, Gervinho, Hulk and Ezequiel Lavezzi have also been tempted to head to the Far East and more could follow in January.
Chelsea manager Conte has recently spoken of the “danger” posed by the big-spending Chinese Super League sides, who now boast the financial clout to outmuscle Premier League rivals.
Speaking last week, before the Oscar deal was officially announced, he said: “The Chinese market is a danger for all teams in the world; not only for Chelsea but all teams in the world.
“But I think that we must be concentrated on our work. I think that this league is fantastic and to play in this league is a great opportunity, a great honour.
“You must be very proud to play in this league. Because I think now it’s the best league in the world.
“For this reason, I don’t worry about this.”
Oscar arrived at Stamford Bridge in 2012 from Internacional in his native Brazil and made 203 appearances for the Blues, scoring 38 goals.
The Sao Paulo academy graduate has started just five Premier League games this season, though, with Conte settling on a side which has won 11 matches in a row.
His last Chelsea appearance came off the bench in the 2-1 victory over Tottenham on November 26.
A statement on Shanghai SIPG’s official website read: “Oscar will soon arrive in Shanghai to complete his medical examination.”