Paulinho has returned to the Chinese Super League, agreeing on a move from Barcelona to Guangzhou Evergrande after less than a year in La Liga.
He will rejoin Guangzhou on an initial six-month loan, with a compulsory purchase option from December 31.
The midfielder’s arrival at Camp Nou last summer was met with surprise, skepticism, and resentment from the Blaugrana fans, completing a switch towards the end of the transfer window following the sale of Neymar.
The Brazilian made 49 appearances for Barcelona, scoring nine goals and adding a further three assists in all competitions.
With the Catalans struggling to accommodate a host of non-European Union players, however, Paulinho has been released back to Guangzhou. His exit will open up a spot for compatriot Arthur, who is set to join the Blaugrana from Gremio this summer.
“Welcome back,” Guangzhou wrote on their official website alongside a picture of the 29-year-old, who formed part of Brazil’s World Cup squad in Russia.
Barcelona have also confirmed the sale, wishing Paulinho “the best of luck” for the future.