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ESPN FC  By ESPN

Paulinho Barcelona move shows CSL strength - Andre Villas-Boas

Barcelona's move to sign midfielder Paulinho from Guangzhou Evergrande demonstrates the strength of the Chinese Super League, Andre Villas-Boas has said.

Shanghai SIPG boss Villas-Boas said the imminent transfer, reported to be likely to go through early this week, was "good news" for the game in China.

Villas-Boas, who coached Paulinho during his time at Tottenham Hotspur, told reporters: "Because Paulinho has come here and done ever so well, now he has a transfer to one of the biggest clubs in the world.

"I think it shows that the big clubs are also looking at our league. It's a reflection of the players and the quality of work that is being done here."

Brazil international Paulinho, starred as Evergrande won the CSL title last season.

Captain Zheng Zhi said his departure would be a blow, and with the Chinese transfer window currently closed no replacement can be bought in.

"We will miss our main player and it will impact the team," he said. "But, no matter what, we give our blessings to Paulinho."

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