Guangzhou Evergrande move to deny Paulinho transfer speculation
Chinese Super League side Guangzhou Evergrande have denied that former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Paulinho is on his way out after speculation he would leave.
Paulinho returned to the Brazil national team last month and scored a hat trick in their World Cup qualifying win over Uruguay.
Six-time CSL champions Guangzhou issued a statement in which they denied reports that they had received bids for the 28-year-old.
"We officially announce that Guangzhou Evergrande has never received an offer for Paulinho," the statement said.
"Paulinho signed a contract extension with Guangzhou Evergrande in January 2017 and is a key player in the club's long-term plan."
Paulinho signed a three-year contract when he joined from Spurs for €14 million in June 2015, and the extension is reported to run until the end of the 2020 Chinese Super League season.
"These transfer rumours are normal in the football industry," Paulinho told Chinese media after Sunday's CSL win over Tianjin Teda.
"My agent must have received enquiries from some European clubs.
"But I like where I am and I have been having good time with my teammates and coaches. I'd like to stay here to win more titles."
At the weekend, the Chinese Football Association (CFA) warned Paulinho following his involvement in a gambling advert alongside a Japanese porn actress, advising CSL players against such behaviour in future.
Michael Church has written about Asian football for more than 20 years and mainly covers the Chinese game for ESPN FC. Twitter: @michaelrgchurch