Mourinho has revealed he shares other Premier League manager’s concerns about Chinese Super League big money offers.
The relatively recent phenomenon has seen footballers and managers receive double or triple the amount they earn in Europe, which has made transfer life for European clubs much more difficult.
He told GQ: “If you are negotiating a new contract with one of your players, and you offer him £5 million per year and they offer £25 million, then you have a big problem. Maybe the player takes £5 million because he prefers football. Or £25 million because he prefers money.”
The most recent team that has been distracted by big money offers from China are Chelsea, who had an unsettled Diego Costa on their hands after he received a huge £30 million per year contract offer. The Blues had already lost Brazilian midfielder Oscar a month earlier, now playing for Shanghai SIPG on a gargantuan salary of £400,000 a week.
“I have already refused a big offer to go to China,” Mourinho said “but I don’t criticise anyone who decides to do it. It’s their choice, their life. Only they can decide what they need for their future.
“Other managers in the Premier League have been critical, but I am no critic. I am worried, because they can offer contracts that are impossible to offer in Europe. But in the end the player who wants to go is the player that maybe you don’t need to keep.”
Picture: DSanchez17. Pepe is one of the lastest Chinese big-name signings from Europe.
The Chinese Super League has become the main competitor for the American MLS as the destination for post-peak football stars who are up for earning a buck, but they have been getting bolder by the week.
The list of European players in the CSL has been steadily growing in recent years, with players such as Didier Drogba, Nicholas Anelka, Eidur Gudjohnsen and Pepe among all who have opted for the switch.
South Americans have had an even bigger contingent there: Carlos Tevez, Ezequel Lavezzi, Hulk, Alexandre Pato and Robinho, among a host of others.
For Mourinho, it’s a question of player preference: “Imagine the guy who is 24 or 25, and he wants to go? At 24, or 25? Ok, goodbye be happy…They player who is 31 or 32, they go for a few years and then come back with a bank account full, OK.
“But when they are young and they have a chance to be in the best competitions, and they still decide to go, well maybe it is better that they go.”