​Barcelona have confirmed, as expected, that an agreement has been reached with Chinese Super League club Hebei China Fortune over the transfer of decorated defender Javier Mascherano.

The news comes a day after Barça confirmed that Mascherano would be receiving an 'institutional farewell' for his service to the club, although at that moment they stopped short of announcing where his next destination will be.

A move to China had been an open secret for some time, though, and the transfer will now be officially completed later this week on 26th January.

Having arrived from ​Liverpool in 2010, Mascherano leaves Camp Nou with four ​La Liga titles, four Copa del Rey trophies, two Champions Leagues and two FIFA Club World Cups to his name.

He will be one of the four foreign players Chinese Super League clubs are permitted to register at any one time - a total of six over the course of the whole season and only three per match.


Mascherano joins fellow countryman Ezequiel Lavezzi in the Hebei province in the north of the country, but the squad must be trimmed ahead of the 2018 campaign. The club also holds registrations for Gervinho and Stephane Mbia, as well as South Korean defender Kim Ju-young, who is counted after the league scrapped the rule allowing one extra foreign player from Asia.

Hernanes, who spent the latter half of 2017 on loan with Sao Paulo, is also still contracted.