Anelka denies threat to leave Shanghai job
SHANGHAI - Agence France-Presse
French superstar Nicolas Anelka says he wants to stay at Shanghai Shenhua. REUTERS photo
French striker Nicolas Anelka yesterday denied threatening to quit Shanghai Shenghua and pledged to stick with the Chinese club as it pursues the signature of his ex-Chelsea teammate Didier Drogba.
Anelka blamed a communication breakdown after a Chinese newspaper said he was on the verge of walking out over plans over to hire a new manager.
His latest comments come after Shenhua’s owner, video-game magnate Zhu Jun, reportedly demanded an explanation from Anelka and threatened a $70,000 fine.
“This matter is perhaps caused by problems in some aspects of communication,” Anelka told a press conference. “I will stay with the club.” Chinese media have said Anelka was unhappy with Shenhua’s bid to bring in Argentina’s Sergio Daniel Batista as a replacement for French manager Jean Tigana, who was sacked last month. Anelka joined Shenhua in January on a two-year contract paying 234,000 euros a week and was named as player-coach after Tigana’s dismissal.