Players who have swapped Chelsea for Chinese Super League
John Obi Mikel has become the latest player to join the Chinese Super League revolution after announcing he was ending a 10-year stay at Chelsea to sign for Tianjin TEDA.
China is proving ever more popular due to the seemingly vast riches on offer and Mikel is not the first Blues player to walk away from Stamford Bridge and end up in the Asian country. Here, Press Association Sport looks at the others:
Submitted a transfer request to leave Chelsea in December 2011 and signed for Shanghai Shenhua the following month. The Frenchman was added to the coaching staff a few months into his arrival but struggled to impose himself on the pitch, scoring just three times in 22 appearance before going on loan to Juventus the following year.
Carried Chelsea to Champions League glory before opting to join Anelka at Shanghai Shenhua. Fared better than his old Blues strike partner, finding the net eight times from 11 appearances but, despite signing a two-and-a-half-year deal, he signed for Galatasaray six months after his arrival in China. Returned to Chelsea to great fanfare for the 2014-15 season.
Joined Shanghai Shenhua 18 months ago from Besiktas on a three-year deal with an annual salary reported to be worth more than £5million. The former Newcastle and Chelsea striker scored 14 times in 18 matches last year before suffering a horrible leg break in July which has ruled him out of action ever since.
Signed for Jiangsu Suning from Chelsea 12 months ago in a deal believed to be worth £25million - a Chinese Super League record that would be broken twice in the following 10 days. The Brazilian midfielder was sent off on his debut but helped his new club finish runner-up to Guangzhou Evergrande in the league.
Joined Brazilian comptratiot Ramires out of the door at Stamford Bridge last month after finding himself out of favour with manager Antonio Conte. However, Chelsea cashed in as they received a reported £52million from Shanghai SIPG , which gave the Blues a handsome profit of around £30million on the midfielder they bought from Brazilian club Internacional in 2012.
And one manager...
Sacked by Chelsea in March 2012 after only a few months in the job, the Portuguese left Tottenham after an equally disappointing stint before reviving his career at Zenit St Petersburg. Appointed Shanghai SIPG manager in November last year, succeeding former England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson.