FC Barcelona shock decision to allow Brazil midfielder Paulinhoreturn to China has reportedly been cited as the club's attempt to lure another foreign star to the club.
Paulinho played 34 games and scored nine goals as Barcelona won La Liga last term, and started all five of Brazil's World Cup games in Russian Federation.
With the Catalans struggling to accommodate a host of non-European Union players, however, Paulinho has been released back to Guangzhou.
When he signed for the club last summer for a fee of €40 million, fans and critics alike lashed out at the club for signing a Premier League reject who plied his trade in the Chinese Super League, and did not fit the club's philosophy and style of play.
But Mina did very well for Colombia at the World Cup, and this means that the club has made a decision to retain the 22-year old centre-back, and replaced non-EU player Paulinho with his compatriot Arthur.
The former Tottenham man will move to Guangzhou on a loan transfer for one season, which includes a subsequent purchase option for the defending Super League champions.
Although the total amount of 88m euros reflects a negative moment in Guangzhou Evergrande's budget, the team have also suffered on field during the Brazilian's absence. The 29-year-old played a huge role in their title-winning campaign but most importantly, he provided a physical presence in midfield, which Barcelona were lacking for quite a long time.
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