Pato nears CSL switch after being pictured in Tianjin shirt

The Chelsea flop looks like the latest star to be tempted by the riches of the Chinese Super League, with a move from Villarreal nearly done

Villarreal look set to cash in on Alexandre Pato’s sale to Tainjin Quanjin, with the striker posing in the Chinese Super League club’s jersey.

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Pato appears ready to play on his third different continent in as many seasons, with his first stint in La Liga with The Yellow Submarine proving to be unfruitful.

The 27-year-old is the subject of an €18 million bid from Tianjin, with manager Fabio Cannavaro eager to add him to his squad that already consists of new arrival Axel Witsel.

It is rumoured the former Brazil international will put pen to paper on a three-year deal that will see him earn €6m a season.

The aspiring Chinese powerhouses sensed their opportunity to snap up a player who flattered to deceive at Villarreal, only managing a return of six goals in 24 outings.

done deal. welcome @alexandrepato

— tianjin quanjian (@tianjinfootball) January 28, 2017

Pato had moved to El Madrigal last summer following an inconsequential loan spell at Chelsea – where he made just two appearances – from Corinthians.

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He has been in Rome in recent days completing his medical, and will join up with his new team-mates as they embark on their pre-season in Italy.

Villarreal coach Fran Escriba had confirmed an “interesting offer” had arrived for Pato, leaving the ex-AC Milan star out of his squad that beat Granada 2-0 on Saturday.

Tianjin’s pursuit of Fiorentina hitman Nikola Kalinic fell through earlier in January after he turned down the transfer, forcing Cannavaro to look elsewhere.