March 2 – China’s new restrictions on foreign player quotas in order to boost domestic progress is widely expected to reduce lavish overseas spending.
But in the final transfer window before the clamp down is imposed, the country’s 16 elite clubs spent a record £331 million, easily outstripping England’s Premier League.
The money-no-object total beats the previous figure of £293 million and included 173 transfers as clubs looked to strengthen before the new spending caps apply.
From next season, three non-Chinese players can be fielded in any one fixture, a move the country’s football association hopes will combat “irrational” spending.
Among the biggest moves to the Chinese Super League prior to the new rules was Oscar’s switch from Chelsea to join Shanghai SIPG for £60m.
China’s winter transfer window, which closed Tuesday, runs for 28 days longer than those of European clubs.
The country’s spend was 16 times bigger than the total outlay in La Liga and more than the sum spent in Spain, Italy, Germany and France combined.
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