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Jonas Salley set to join Chinese Super League club Shanxxi Chanba

Fresh from playing a starring role for Adelaide United in Saturday's final loss to Melbourne Victory, Ivory Coast-born Jonas Salley is off to China. Salley who was the Reds man of the finals series told tribalfootball.com, "I really enjoyed myself over the last few years here in Australia and it's now my home.

"In 2008 I became an Australian citizen and my sister and father live in Melbourne.

"As I said so many times before, football is my life and my profession and as a professional football demands are that your suitcase is always packed and ready to move to the next contract.

"As much as I love Australia and enjoy playing in the A-League, I want to push myself all the way. In the past I had offers to go to Europe but I do not have an EU passport so that has blocked me.

"This season with Adelaide was very frustrating because I felt I was in good form but that's the way it goes. I will miss the fans in Adelaide as well as my teammates but many of them will be gone anyway.

"I had offers from Korea and China over the last few months but I wanted to finish with Adelaide on a high note which we almost did."

Salley will travel to Xi'an, the capital of the Shaanxi province on Wednesday to finalise the deal.

"I am going for a medical and to meet with the people at Shanxxi Chanba in China.

"I do not know much about this Club or the League to be honest. But at the same time everyone knows that China is very serious about becoming a football power and now with the AFC ruling there will be many Australians going to play there.

"My agent has checked Shanxxi Chanba out with other contacts in China and they have a very good reputation so that pleases me."

Salley said new A-League franchise Gold Coast United had made him an offer and admitted he would have liked to play there if an overseas deal could not be agreed on.

"I was very happy that Miron Bleiberg wanted me to go to the Gold Coast and if there was no interest from overseas my agent and I were happy with what Miron had offered.

"But the future always delivers new scenarios and who knows where I will end up.

"Now that I am an Australian citizen I hope that Mr Verbeek will consider me for the Socceroos. That would be incredible if that was to eventuate. Who knows?"

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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