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Transfer Rater: Nkunku to Liverpool

Football Whispers
 By Mark Rodden

Hebei China Fortune's Gervinho - 'my European career has finished'

Former Arsenal forward Gervinho has admitted that he is unlikely to return to Europe after moving from Roma to China last month.

The Ivory Coast international, 28, made the switch after Hebei China Fortune offered Roma €18 million to secure his services.

Argentine winger Ezequiel Lavezzi said this week that his international career was likely to be over after claiming he turned down Chelsea, Inter Milan and Manchester United to link up with the Chinese Super League side.

Gervinho, who had been playing in Europe since 2004, also recognised that a move to Asia would have major consequences for his career.

"It's certain that, on a sporting and cultural level, it's completely different to what I've known so far," Gervinho told L'Equipe.

"But I no longer had the motivation or the desire to remain in Europe.

"Even if I can't say that I will never go back, my European career has finished. I've started a new one on another continent."

Gervinho says his decision to leave Roma was 'sped up' by the sacking of manager Rudi Garcia.

Gervinho said he took two weeks to decide on the move, but that the sacking of Roma boss Rudi Garcia in January had "sped things up."

"I was surprised and disappointed because for me there was no reason why he shouldn't finish the season," the former Lille attacker said.

"Rudi, for me, is more than a manager. It was him who fought to bring me to Rome.

"I could have stayed after his departure. The club wanted to keep me but I said to my directors that I needed to be right in my head, which was no longer the case."

As well as former Paris Saint-Germain player Lavezzi, Cameroon midfielder Stephane Mbia and ex-Chelsea and Sevilla winger Gael Kakuta have also committed to the Chinese club. Gervinho says the new recruits will have to justify the faith that has been placed in them.

"I'm not going to lie -- the contract that they offered me is huge," he said. "But if you're offered that much, it's also because you deserve it.

"It's up to us to show on the pitch that we're the best."


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