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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Chinese Super League club offered Odion Ighalo 'almost £300,000 a week'

Watford striker Odion Ighalo has said he was offered nearly £300,000 a week to move to the Chinese Super League.

A number of big-name players have signed for Chinese clubs, with Jiangsu Suning paying Chelsea £25 million for Ramires and Shakhtar Donetsk £38.5m for Alex Teixeira, while Guangzhou Evergrande landed Jackson Martinez for £32m.

The Daily Mail reports that Hebei China Fortune, who signed Gael Kakuta on Friday, attempted to secure the signature of Ighalo, who has scored 14 Premier League goals this season.

The Nigeria international said: "I was very close. They made a £10m bid and were offering me over £200,000 a week; a four-year contract. I couldn't sleep for three days.

"That kind of money is not easy to turn down. Some teammates in the dressing room were saying, 'You can't miss this chance.' But I don't jump into decisions like that.

"I prayed about it, and God said it was not for me, no matter how much money it was. I knew God would direct me. When I said I don't want to go, they offered me more money, almost £300,000 a week. I told them it's not about the money."

Ighalo, who signed a new five-year contract at Watford in September, added: "They have called again and I have turned them down again. Maybe if I keep scoring goals, that team will come with triple the money at the end of the season. When the time is right to go to China I will know. If it's for me it will come to pass.

"When I was in Ajegunle, I was watching the Premier League, dreaming one day I would be part of it. If I keep doing what I'm doing I can enjoy my football in England for four, five or six years.

"I helped this team to promotion. How can I leave because of money? I know money is good. With that sort of money I can secure my life. But you can't sell your dream."

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