Chinese Super League News: Napoli's Dries Mertens Rejects China Move due to 'Respect for His Parents'
Napoli winger Dries Mertens has recently admitted that he decided to turn down a multi-million dollar China move in due respect for his parents who wanted him to stay in a top club in Europe.
Mertens, 29, disclosed that he had received a huge offer to play in the Chinese Super League last summer and he was tempted to accept the deal. He did not mention any specific club, but he said that the salary proposal is so huge that it would be enough even for his grandchildren to not worry about money ever again.
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However, he said that out of his respect to his parents, he ultimately chose to reject the offer and stay with Napoli in Italy to compete with some of the best teams in Europe, Daily Mail Online reported.
"I have so much respect for what my parents did for me. They did not raise me talking about money - I would have disappointed them if I went to China," Mertens told a local Italian news outlet.
"My father was driving the bus from Anderlecht and he took me from the age of 11 to 18 years old every day to training in Brussels," the Belgium international said.
Mertens confessed, though, that the offer was "difficult to turn down", particularly the idea of having the opportunity to financially provide for his family for what would have been an unlimited time.
The Belgian winger is in top form this season, scoring 20 goals in 29 games in all competitions for Partenopei so far, as per Sportal. He has been with Napoli for three-and-a-half seasons now since he was acquired from Eredivisie side PSV Eindhoven in the summer of 2013.
"We have weighed the pros and cons, my wife has read testimonials from people who live there, and then you hear about the smog and you say it's not a healthy atmosphere," he added. "And I decided to say no, I can tell you that it is difficult to refuse such an amount. My children and even my grandchildren would no longer have had to worry about their future."