Former Newcastle United and England striker Alan Shearer on Friday stated that the reason Chinese Super League have been splashing exorbitant amount of money to attract top stars was because they wanted them to be a part of the league in their prime unlike the Indian Super League.
Shearer, who was in town to attend a seminar on developing the footballing ecosystem in India, said even though the Chinese league has managed to attract a few top names, he didn’t think the trend would continue beyond a few years.
“I find it difficult to see how China will be able to sustain paying the sort of salaries to players they pay now,” the Premier League all-time top goal scorer said.
“The difference between China and the ISL is that when the ISL signed a lot of big name players they were sort of on their way out or in the latter stages of their careers. What China are doing is to get players at the peak of their career, at 24 or 25 years of age, which is one of the reasons why they have to pay the outrageous sums of money as salaries. I don’t necessarily see that as the right way forward.”, he added.
Admitting that he wasn’t an expert on Indian football, Shearer added that lack of infrastructure and facilities can’t be reasons for not promoting the game or help children take it up as a career option.
“I didn’t have great stadiums when I started. I didn’t have great facilities when I was a kid. But I loved the game,” the talismanic striker added.
“So if we can keep promoting the game and tell kids how great football is, you necessarily don’t need great facilities, which I never had. I didn’t have the pristine pitches to play on or the training stadiums that they have these days. I sometimes played on the road or the streets. You don’t need infrastructure for a start. Not as kids. I used stones, cans, or whatever I could find to play football.”