Having played his last professional game in early 2021, Fernando Luiz Roza, or Fei Nanduo as he was known after being naturalised as a Chinese national by the Chiense FA, has arrived in Jinan, Shandong. A chain of unexpected events has severely damaged the squad depth and especially in the winger position of Shandong Taishan, the League runners-up and FA Cup winners last year. Shandong is said to be ‘very interested’ in signing the winger but has said the club will need to assess the state of the winger’s fitness and skills.
Fernandinho, as he was more better known before naturalisation, was born in 1993 and came to China in June 2015. The winger has played for Chongqing, where he found most successful Hebei and Guangzhou Evergrande, where he was was naturalized successfully in 2019, leaping ahead of more eager foreign players as Ivo of Henan Jianye. Fei Nanduo participated in the national team’s training camps, but always failed to made a formal appearance. In Jan 2022, he and Luo Guofu accepted the call-up to Japan to participate in the third round of World Cup qualifiying games. But Fei returned to Brazil after having already reached Amsterdam for the second leg of the flight over “family reasons”. After he left China after 2021, he never played a professional game despite the interest of Brazilian clubs in signing him. Last year, in an interview with CCTV, he expressed his hope to return to Asian football and get the chance to play for the national football team.
The latest news that Taishan is interested in Fernando comes as the club has rocked by a series of scandals. The club in the new season is set to lose Jin Jingdao, who is allegedly arrested in an anti-gambling investigation, and Wu Xinghan, whose extra-marital affairs instigated the whole thing. A third, Qi Tianyu, is also involved in infidelity and prostitution. Fei arrived in Ji’nan on the 24th. However, his place in the team is not guaranteed yet as Taishan needs to assess his physical condition. Since the ‘little motorcycle’, as he is affectionately known from his Chongqing days, has returned to China, all things considered, the probability of joining is very high as the club’s hands are more or less forced. At any rate, the team needs to improve its quality an depth. And Fei Nanduo, who is fast and shoots well, is undoubtedly very much in line with Taishan’s needs.
According to the report, compared to the 34-year-old Elkeson and Alan, Fernando is only 30 years old and is theoretically in his prime. But he has been unemployed since leaving China, and it is unknown how much form he can regain. After all, his last official match appearance was back on May 9, 2021, when Guangzhou beat Cangzhou Lions 2-0 away from home, more than 680 days ago.
In fact, Fei’s form has been declining since the 2019 season, and Taishan will have to assess whether he still wants to continue playing, or how much desire to actually he still has. The criticism of Fei Nanduo is that he is not professional enough and his desire is not strong enough. Critics say that if he has half of the passion of Luo Guofu, he may not be in the same situation now.
Nevertheless, if Fei Nanduo can sign with Taishan and get back to form here, it will be providing for the national football team with more options, as Liu Binbin, Fei Nanduo’s teammate-to-be, gave a very unconvincing performance against New Zealand in the past FIFA match day. Fei Nanduo’s arrival will drive Liu, who player the same position, play harder, too. That is, as long as Aleksandar Janković, does not abuse Fei Nanduo as Li Tie allegedly did. The now disgraced former national team manager reportedly over-trained an injured Fei Nanduo which prolonged his time away from pitch and caused him to have second thoughts about the natioal team.