Former England coach Sven Goran Eriksson has opened up on life in China, and has insisted that Wayne Rooney “would have a positive experience” if he decided to move to the Chinese Super League this summer.
Rooney has been urged to move to the United States to continue his career by former England teammate Frank Lampard, but Rooney’s former international boss has now talked-up the potential of the Chinese Super League.
Eriksson has spent the last four years in Chinese football with Shanghai SIPG and Guangzhou R&F, although he recently left League One side Shenzhen FC after just six months at the helm.
“I hear a lot that China is not a good place to live for foreign people but that could not be further from the truth. I never had a problem. Of course it is not the same as Europe and the culture is very different. But if you live in Shanghai, it is like living in London,” Eriksson told reporters.
“If you want to eat Italian, Japanese or Spanish food then there are a lot of restaurants like that and you have everything you need. You don’t feel cut off at all, I certainly didn’t and none of the foreign players I had with me felt that way either. I lived in Guangzhou, Shanghai and Shenzhen and they were fantastic cities. I don’t think any foreigner had difficulties with the Chinese way of living in the big cities while I was there.
“I haven’t spoken to Rooney for a long time, so I don’t know what he is thinking, but if he went to China I think he would have a positive experience. He has a young family but there are international schools in the big cities and I know for sure he would have every help possible to make him settle. He would be made very welcome.
“The only problem you have is the language. But if you live in Shanghai or Beijing you have a lot of foreign people, so it is less of an issue. I bumped into many Swedish people in Shanghai and many Europeans live there, working for big companies. And, don’t forget, the players get treated well.”