Tianjin Teda of China midfielder, John Mikel Obi appears heading into a period of extended woes at the club, as he was left out totally from their last match day squad list, despite recovering fully from injury.
Rather than be part of the action in their latest Chinese Super League match on Friday, Mikel watched Teda’s home game against Henan Jianye from the stands, after he was omitted from the 18-man squad.
The former Lyn Oslo of Norway and ex-Chelsea of England star resumed full training with his teammates in mid-week, after recovering from a knee injury he suffered against Dangdai Lifan on July 21, but his chances with Teda have now been restricted by foreign player quota.
Chinese Super League rules stipulate that teams can use only three foreign players at any point within a match, and the number must be no more than the under-23 domestic players lined out.
With those provisos in mind, Tianjin Teda’s German manager, Uli Stielike opted to select Johnathan of Brazil, Frank Acheampong of Ghana and Felix Bastians of Germany ahead of Mikel.
It means, since the resumption of the Chinese top-flight season, Mikel has now missed five games for Tianjin Teda, the first of which was as a result of an automatic suspension due to accumulated yellow cards.