Former Chelsea midfielder Oscar chose to leave the club for a big-money move to the Chinese Super League because he had fallen out of favour under Antonio Conte, and is looking to force his way back into the Brazilian national team.
That’s at least according to Sui Guoyang, general manager of Shanghai SIPG – the club Oscar has joined this month in a €60m deal – who was speaking to reporters, via Goal, about the 25-year-old’s transfer away from Stamford Bridge.
While most have pointed to the huge increase in earnings Oscar has received as his key reason for leaving London – his earnings now total around £20m per year – it was in fact his omission from the Chelsea team and his international ambitions that played just as big a role in his decision.
The official said: “Oscar has fallen out of favour with Conte because he has no place in Chelsea’s 3-4-3 formation. It played a key part in his desire to leave. He felt terrible to sit on the bench and not be involved. He is so young.
“Oscar wants to come back to the Brazil national team. Some of his compatriots play in the CSL and they still get called up to the national team. So it helped him to make the decision to move to China.
“And of course, the appointment of (ex-Chelsea boss) Andre Villas Boas is a plus. Oscar knows we are an ambitious club.”
Guoyang also went on to clarify that the club had paid 60m euros for the player, instead of the widely reported 60m pounds, and that they needed to offer such big money in order to seal the deal: “If we don’t offer €60m, do you think he will bother to come?
“There’s such a huge gap between CSL and Europe’s top leagues. It’s unrealistic to suggest that we would have done it in a different way.
“The cost of signing the player was €60m indeed, not £60m. The club’s senior management personally flew to Paris to seal the deal.”