If there’s been one constant in Gustav Svensson’s nomadic soccer career, it’s been a willingness to move wherever there’s opportunity. Now that spirit of adventure may be taking him back to China. Svensson has been linked to a move back to Guangzhuou City, the same team that first loaned him to the Seattle Sounders in 2017.
Guangzhou City(R&F) are close to sign Gustav Svensson, whose contract with Seattle Sounders will expire soon. The Swedish defender played for Guangzhou R&F in 2016 as a linchpin player. Their targets also involve Everaldo (Kashima Antlers) and Guilherme (Göztepe, Turkey). pic.twitter.com/Z9vAbv4Fvr— Titan Sports Plus (@titan_plus) December 26, 2020
That Svensson is considering a move away from the Sounders and out of MLS should not be a huge surprise. That he might be going to China instead of returning to his native Sweden, though, is a bit more of one. Svensson has not been shy about his desire to eventually return to Sweden, where he started his career and still considers home. With his Sounders contract expiring this year, now seemed like a sensible time to make that move.
What might be motivating a return to China is not entirely clear, but there’s a good chance that it’s an opportunity for a final payday. Although the Chinese Super League signing boom is apparently over, the league still had a salary cap of nearly $100 million per team ahead of last season. Sweden, on the other hand, is a comparably modest-paying soccer league where he’d almost certainly have to accept a significant pay cut from the roughly $600,000 a year he was making in MLS.