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Why So Many Big-Name Soccer Players Are Going to China

Association football (better known as soccer) is, in case you didn’t already know, the world’s most loved sport. In fact, it’s played by 250 million players in over 200 countries around the globe. For centuries, the game has been especially popular across Europe and the Southern Continents of America; more recently, its popularity has been growing exponentially in the United States and China.

In fact, the latter countries sudden interest in the sport is partly thanks to a government initiative (the Chinese government—more specifically, president Xi Jinping’s government—wants China to become a soccer superpower by 2050). Now, many of the most recognizable names in the world are heading there to begin the next stage of their careers; but what is it that attracts names like Carlos Tevez and Alexandre Pato to a country whose level of playing is arguably still in its infancy?

Money

Well, you guessed it. The first big reason is money. Despite the English Premier League offering some pretty substantial monetary compensation (the EPL has an average salary of somewhere around two and a half million pounds, which converts to well over three million dollars), they can’t offer anywhere near the kind of payment that Chinese clubs are dishing out.

In fact, some of the biggest deals being made between the country’s clubs and foreign players are enough to make grown men weep. Carlos Tevez, who famously had a fantastic run at Manchester United, announced back in December 2016 that he would be making the move to Shaingai Shensua this year. He won’t be short of cash in Shanghai, though, because he’ll be earning around £615,000 each week (that’s $779,000, by the way). It’s thought that his time at Shensua will be the last before he retires, and so it makes sense that he does what makes financial sense for himself.

On the other hand, Brazilian football player Oscar also made the switch to China back at the beginning of the year. Being the once much-hyped wonderkid of Chelsea FC, fans felt somewhat underwhelmed by his performance. He managed to score 38 goals in 203 appearances, but parted with the club mutually and in December last year after they received an offer from Shanghai SIPG.

Oscar is quite a unique case in that – unlike most other big names making the switch to China – he is still only 25 and, relatively speaking, in his prime. However, the club paid £60 million for him, and he is expected to take home somewhere around £350,000 per week.

Little Troubles in Big China

It’s not all honey and milk in the Far East, though. One of the big name transfers was Didier Drogba, the Chelsea star who had a fantastic run at the club before signing to Shenhua (Tevez’s new club) for £200,000 per week. It wouldn’t last long, though, as he would make the move to the Turkish Side, Galatasaray, six months later. It’s easy to think that money like that would keep anyone loyal, but Drogba experienced several challenges while playing for Shenua.

The most notable among them, of course, is trying to drag a mediocre team in a mediocre league up the table. Despite his obvious professionalism and enthusiasm, internal conflict between Zhu Jun (the Chinese multimillionaire who owned 28.5% of the club) and the team’s other owners – partly caused by the size of Drogba’s wages – meant that the Ivorian legend had no other choice but to make the switch to somewhere closer to home.

Magic Money Trees

Because Chinese is a booming economy, there’s a lot of money changing hands among the business elites . However, you may (quite rightly) be wondering how that money ends up being funneled into the Chinese Super League. Corporations around the country are bankrolling the teams with almost unimaginable sums of cash, but why?

While investing in soccer might be a sound investment, there is another somewhat more nefarious reason for businessmen to put their dollars into the sport: government kickbacks. In fact, each of the sixteen Super League teams are owned by separate businesses. It’s thought that—because the government has already been explicitly clear about their initiatives and desire for the sport to grow in the country—businessmen are parting with their cash because it’s a way to appease those in power.

As the value of the league continues to grow, so do rumors of corruption. Players, team officials, and even referees have been caught up in scandals over the years. Many were banned for life, and others were sentenced to jail. In fact, several betting companies refuse to take bets on the league, owing to the ostensible endemic running throughout the sport right now.

Chinese Soccer presents a huge prospect, especially given their obvious dedication to improving as a collective whole for the betterment of their home country. However, it’s still a long way off from matching the level of the sport seen elsewhere in the world. In any case, you can be sure that these big-name signings will continue to happen, so long as the money keeps flowing in like it already has done.

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Effective Ways To Save For Your IRA

Retirement is a very important goal to save for. You need to make a call as to how to save your funds for retirement, whether it be in dedicated account like an IRA or in a 401K through your job or some combination. The potential for growth in compound interest is great, so that means that you need to be able to put as much money into them as possible.

Which is why you need a monthly budget and you need to stick to it. Budgets are great tools for keeping track of your monthly cash flow, income and investments. And once you get past the psychology of not being able to think about money, it can really help your spending habits. Because it provides a chance to prioritize what you value and what you need to spend money on.

First of all, pay yourself first. You need to have money in savings in order to invest in an IRA or some other account. So you need to be disciplined about saving money for yourself and your family. Bills, food, cars and entertainment all have their place, but paying yourself first needs to come first. And it is great to be able to automate it. When you create a regular transaction from your regular account to a savings account, that means it happens without thinking about it. You can also automate savings straight to your IRA.

Use multiple savings accounts. You need to have places to put money for emergencies, major purchases and regular expenditures. That way you always have a place to save your money.

How do you get that extra money? Look for a raise at work. You need to be able to talk to your boss about getting more money when you think you deserve it. It can be a hard conversation at first, but you can really increase your income the more you do it and the better you get at asking for raises. Keep an eye out for bonuses as well. If you budget correctly, found money like that can go straight into your IRA.

Then you need to look at your expenses. Do you need both a cleaning service and a landscaping service? Figure out which one you can live without and cut that one. How much do you spend on groceries each month? Where are ways you can cut that down? You can cut coupons out of the newspaper and figure out more economical ways of getting proper nutrition. Cheap protein, like eggs and beans are always a good solution.

Look at your local library. There are always great books there, but you can also find movies, TV shows and documentaries that you can borrow for free. That might provide a chance to break down your cable bill and allow you to cut the cord.

The ability to save for your IRA can be learned. You don’t have to be a natural saver. You can change your habits if you put the effort in. Learn how to cook more and learn where you can invest wisely to replace your job income with passive income. That will allow you to make more money, have more time and save for your IRA.

Kimberly Dey’s Top Tips to Staying Fit and Healthy

Everybody knows that we need to focus on getting and staying fit and healthy, but very few of us seem to actually be able to do it. The reality is that it is difficult. We live unhealthy lifestyles that are based on convenience and speed. If we want to become fit and healthy again, that means that we have to make some significant lifestyle changes, and that is hard to do. But the desire is clearly there. Kimberly Dey, for instance, has noticed that between $40 and $50 billion is spent on losing weight alone each and every year. The problem is that much of that money is spent on scams and products that promise the world but deliver nothing.

Kimberly Dey on Realistic Health and Fitness

Diet and lifestyle are the two key things that will determine how fit and healthy you are. It is said that there is an 80/20 rule, meaning that how you look is 80% down to what you eat and 20% down to what you do in the gym. This shows just how hugely important what you eat every day actually is. And one of the things we all seem to get way too much of as of late, is red meat. Red meat isn’t just steak (steak can be very healthy, actually). Rather, it is found in burgers and various other snack foods. It is high in fat and high in purine, leading not just to weight gain but also to gout. Your meats should be white, and they should be boiled, broiled, grilled, or baked. Additionally, the focus should be mainly on fruits and vegetables, leaving the high calorie dressings away.

Other types of lifestyle changes also have to be implemented, however. That 20% exercise is still an important 20%. Once you have reached your target weight, the percentage actually shifts a little bit, because you then start to work out to modify your shape. Either way, exercise is vital to a healthy, fit body. The great thing about exercise is that there are so man different options out there. For instance, you can go to a gym and lift weights, you can take an aerobics class and dance about for an hour, you can go swimming or cycling, and so on. Whatever you decide to do, however, you must start by warming up and finish by cooling down. Without it, you will produce excessive lactic acid, which causes pain the muscles and will make you give up. Similarly, doing the same thing over and over again gets very boring.

Last but not least, you have to be willing and ready to give up on your vices. Smoking is an absolute no-no, as it can lead to heart disease, arteriosclerosis, various other vascular conditions, and, of course, cancer. Similarly, you need to curb your alcohol consumption and never drink to excess. That said, some alcohol consumption is good, because it can lead to vasodilation, which helps to protect your heart. A healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be completely boring, in other words.