Paul Ince wouldn’t have left Liverpool to join China – even for £500k-per-week…
This is coming from a man that joined Middlesbrough just two years after joining us from Inter Milan!
We bought ‘The Guvnor’ in 1997, which caused some stir at Anfield because he previously played for Manchester United, and despite being a first-team regular during his stint on Merseyside, Gerard Houllier got rid in 1999 and signed Didi Hamann instead – a mighty fine piece of business in hindsight.
Ince claims though that even for half a million quid every seven days, which would have made him the world’s highest paid player by a very, very long distance in 1999, he wouldn’t have left for the Far East!
“I was brought up with the belief that I wanted to play for the biggest clubs in the world and playing in the most competitive competitions,” said Ince, speaking exclusively to the Paddy Power blog .
“That’s the Premier League and the Champions League. China doesn’t even compare.
“If you’re a top player why would you go when you can still have a successful career in the Premier League?
“There’s no chance I would have left Liverpool or Manchester United to go and play in China. Not even for £500k a week.
“If they had come calling when I was 31 and or 32 and my career was winding down, then absolutely I would have taken it.
“But as a footballer at your peak you should want to play with the best players and win trophies.”
Ince’s claims make no sense because when he left Liverpool, he was 32! The exact age he suggests is ‘wind down’ time for professional footballers…
He went on to play for Boro’, Wolves, Swindon and Macclesfield, and we’re pretty sure anyone in that position would have happily taken the big bucks in China – we certainly would!