Former Chelsea star Oscar interested in playing for China: 'I can help if the rules change'

Midfielder has made 48 appearances for Brazil but none since 2015

Shanghai SIPG midfielder Oscar has been the leading assist-maker for the past two Chinese Super League seasons. AFP
Shanghai SIPG midfielder Oscar has been the leading assist-maker for the past two Chinese Super League seasons. AFP

Brazilian midfielder Oscar has said he would be interested in playing for the China national team if Fifa its rules.

Oscar moved from Premier League club Chelsea to Chinese Super League side Shanghai SIPG for a still-Asian-record €60 million (Dh344m) in January 2017.

The 28-year-old midfielder has been capped 48 times but Brazil, but has not made an appearance since 2015.

Under current rules, Oscar cannot switch to play for another country because he featured for Brazil in official competition, including the 2014 World Cup in his homeland.

Asked by state broadcaster CGTN if he would consider playing for China if the naturalisation rules changed, Oscar replied: "I can think about it because, as I said, it's difficult to go to the Brazilian national team now because I'm here.

"But in China everyone sees how good I play so if in the end the China national team needs a good midfielder, I think I can help if they change.

"I like China but the players now, if they change the nationality to go to China, they (the team) can do better."

As a quick fix to boost their 2022 World Cup hopes, China last year began naturalising a few players who had no family links to the world's most populous country.

The first was Brazilian-born striker Elkeson, 31, who is now known as Ai Kesen and has played four times for China, scoring three goals.

Oscar has been one of the top players in the Chinese Super League since arriving from Chelsea and topped the assists charts over the past two seasons.

Published: July 27, 2020 01:53 PM

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