Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang says he is staying at Borussia Dortmund despite giving serious thought to an offer from China after telling his club he wanted a new challenge.
The 28-year-old, scorer of 40 goals in all competitions last season, confirmed he had received and considered an approach from a Chinese club, before ultimately deciding to reject a move.
Aubameyang revealed he told Dortmund he was ready to move on earlier in the transfer window, but is now happy to stay after none of the clubs linked with him, including AC Milan, Chelsea and Liverpool, struck a deal with the Bundesliga side.
The lucrative China approach was ultimately spurned by Aubemeyang over concerns about the level of professionalism in the Chinese Super League, with the on-off transfer saga involving Anthony Modeste, a star for Cologne in the 2016-17 Bundesliga, confirming his fears.
“It is true that I spoke to Borussia Dortmund before I went on vacation,” Aubameyang told Welt am Sonntag.
“I told them my thoughts, that I was maybe ready to try something different. The discussions with Michael Zorc and Hans-Joachim Watzke were open and fair.
“But none of the clubs that wanted me could make a transfer happen, so I will stay here at Borussia Dortmund. I like staying here very much. I feel at home in Dortmund.
“Of course, China was an option. It is only natural that I thought about it when they offered that much money.
“I know many people said I couldn’t go to China because it would be a step backwards in football terms, but I think anyone would at least consider such an offer.
“I received an offer, but I think the Chinese struggled to make an offer to BVB. I don’t think the structures are yet as professional as in Europe.
“I also noticed the back and forth when Anthony Modeste changed clubs to Tianjin Quanjian. I like clear things and this was anything but clear, so I set it aside.
“I believe in God and fate. I believe that everything happens for a reason, so this is definitely the right path.”
— Borussia Dortmund (@BVB) August 5, 2017
Aubameyang was reluctant to make any long-term commitments, adding: “No one can say what the future holds.
“I want to get the maximum out of my career. Football is my life. And when my career is over, I want to look after my family to help my children. That is all.”
Aubameyang scored in Dortmund’s DFL-Supercup clash against Bayern Munich on Saturday, which his side lost 5-4 on penalties after a 2-2 draw in regulation time.
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