Report: Sounders sell Obafemi Martins to Shanghai



Obafemi Martins has been sold by the Seattle Sounders to Shanghai Shenua in the Chinese Super League, according to a report by the BBC.

Martins was a key part of the Sounders over three years with the club, and his partnership with Clint Dempsey was one of the league’s most dangerous attacking pairings. The Nigerian forward had 40 goals and 23 assists in 72 games for Seattle, and finished second in the MVP voting after the 2014 season. He was hampered by injury last year, limiting him to just eight goals in 20 games.

Martins is 31, but was still seen as having successful years left in him. He reportedly received interest from Premier League clubs during this window. Along with the signing of homegrown forward Jordan Morris, this may signify a renewed focus on youth for the Sounders.

Martins’ move is another in a series of surprising departures from MLS this offseason. The league has lost, among others, USMNT defender Omar Gonzalez, Red Bulls centerback Matt Miazga, and Galaxy midfielder Juninho.

This is part of a growing pattern of Chinese clubs spending big money for players. In just this transfer window, Jiangsu Suning bought Ramires for $28 million and Alex Teixeira for $56 million, Guangzhou Evergrande spent $47 millionon the transfer of Jackson Martinez, and Hebei Fortune signed Ezequiel Lavezzi to a pre-contract.

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  • Not Demba Ba

    Wondering if this spells the end of Tim Cahill’s run in China. They have to get rid of one non Comrade on the team to get down to the 5 limit.

  • Cupid

    Wow I wonder if sounders will go after Carlos vela, Rooney for 2017, chicharito 2017 or save the money for a stadium and if I was garber I would get some Asian investors in the league ASAP, there’s fire and earthquakes who need new blood, and of course red bull.

    • Cupid NYCFC troll

      NYCFC is selling their team and moving to St. Louis, an Asian car manufacturer is buying them. My butt is real sore from the MetroStars and the fact that I don’t have any friends. Some teams from China are coming to MLS. Did I tell you NYCFC is being sold? That logo needs to go, Yankees and Mets, this is soccer. I used to watch soccer at the Meadowlands. I’m still sweet over Petke. My butt is sore from MetroStars and I’m angry I live at home and don’t make over $50k. I’m voting for Bernie.

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