Yaya Toure joins second-tier Chinese side Qingdao Huanghai
Toure said in 2017: "I always say that if I went to China I would end up feeling angry there. Do you play football because you love football or do you play because you want to make money?"
By Max Mathews
Last Updated: 03/07/19 2:38pm
Former Manchester City and Barcelona midfielder Yaya Toure has joined second-tier Chinese side Qingdao Huanghai.
The 36-year-old will play his 18th season in professional football with the China League One leaders, and comes in after a trial following an injury to their midfielder and captain Joan Verdu.
Toure's agent Dimitri Seluk has said he would never move to China, and the three-time Premier League winner insisted he played football for love not money.
Toure said in 2017: "I always say that if I went to China I would end up feeling angry there. Do you play football because you love football or do you play because you want to make money?
"You can be lucky to go and play for big clubs and still earn a lot. But those who go to China? I don't think like that."
Toure said today: "This is a very exciting young club with a lot of potential and we share the same philosophy - that is to play beautiful football. It will be my great honour to grow and succeed with this club.
"I believe my experiences in football will offer something new here and together we can make great history. I can't wait to let my football do the magic once again. Let's enjoy football together!"
In May Seluk also stated the Ivorian was retiring at his peak to go into coaching, which he later denied on Twitter.
Toure said: "Retired? Never! I love football and I'm still in contention to play for a few more years.
"I'm starting to prepare myself for coaching badges but full-time coaching is not what I'm thinking about now."
The 101-capped international left Greek team Olympiacos in December 2018, having only played five games in all competitions after leaving Manchester City that summer.
Qingdao are four points clear of Guizhou Zhicheng in second at the halfway stage of the season, with the top two teams promoted to the Chinese Super League, while Toure is expected to make his debut on Saturday against Zheiyang Greentown.
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