Is the Chinese Super League going after referee Mark Clattenburg?
Oscar is set to make around $480,000 per week at Shanghai SIPG. Carlos Tevez, if he seals his move to Shanghai Shenhua in January, will reportedly make $750,000 per week. Per week!
That’s an absurd level of spending on players, obviously, but the Chinese Super League might not stop there. According to the Mirror, the league’s next target is referee Mark Clattenburg.
Yup, we’ve officially reached the point where the Chinese Super League luring the world’s top referees is no longer just fantasy. It’s made it into real reports and, whether they’re true or not, the prospect is believable.
The Mirror claims that the league hopes to start recruiting top officials and football administrators to take another step towards legitimacy. Because for all of the league’s big spending on players, its reputation remains tarnished by a series of match fixing and corruption scandals. Bringing in top FIFA referees like Clattenburg would be a strong signal that the league is trying to clean up its act. It would also be some next-level money throwing.
Clattenburg was just named “Referee of the Year” at the Globe Soccer Awards in Dubai after taking charge of the Champions League final, the European Championship final and the FA Cup final in 2016.
— Globe Soccer Awards (@Globe_Soccer) December 27, 2016
It’s still a stretch to think Clattenburg would take up an offer to referee in China (and this being a lone report, we don’t even know if an offer has been made), but if someone like Graziano Pelle can make 15.6 million a year over there, we’d love to know what kind of salary the top ref in the world could command. Clattenburg is currently believed to make around £150,000 a season.