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 Post subject: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2016 9:04 pm 
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mildly bemused Jackson Martínez being paraded before the cameras at Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao following his £31m move from Atlético Madrid, part-owned by the Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin. A gurning Sergio Agüero squeezing between David Cameron and the Chinese president, Xi Jingping, for a selfie on a tour of Manchester City’s training ground that presaged a £265m investment in the club.

The graph that shows the £38.4m spent by Jiangsu Suning on the Brazilian midfielder Alex Teixeira, breaking the transfer record for the third time in 10 days and sending total investment by the Chinese Super League soaring past that of the Premier League, in a transfer window that does not close until the end of the month.

Each of these snapshots opened a window into a Chinese football revolution that is only just beginning and has an uncertain destination.

Chinese investment funds are targeting stakes in European clubs, from City to Atlético and Slavia Prague, while media and technology companies pour cash into building a sports economy and strengthening a domestic league until recently riddled with corruption and controversy.

Even more telling than the sums spent on players, which also include Suning’s £25m outlay on Chelsea’s Ramires, is that the game’s so-called super agents are all making tracks for China. In surely the biggest bellwether, Jorge Mendes has recently been pictured alongside his client José Mourinho in China to mark a new partnership with Foyo Culture, a company controlled by Guo Guangchang, the chairman of investment conglomerate Fosun.

Guangchang spoke of helping to build Cristiano Ronaldo’s popularity in China and, as surely as bees to nectar, Mendes will be plotting the transfer of more of his charges to China. Foyo took a stake in his agency, Gestifute, last year.

Meanwhile, Pini Zahavi and Mino Raiola, agent to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and others, are also understood to have set their sights on the riches on offer in the east. Although buoyed by their new £8.3bn TV deal, Premier League clubs and even the big two in Spain may soon struggle to compete financially.

“Football fans of the world are saying: ‘How did this happen?’” says Simon Chadwick, professor of sports enterprise at the centre for sports business at Salford University, who has been charting the rapid rise of the Chinese football industry. “In many ways it’s no surprise at all. Football development is following the same model as Chinese industrial sectors. They have acquired foreign companies and foreign labour to upskill local labour.”

Xi fired the starting gun on this startling spree last year declaring his intention to turn China into a “soccer powerhouse”, uncoupling the game’s administration from central government and unveiling a 50-point plan that will ultimately lead to China not only hosting the World Cup but winning it.

“Revitalising soccer is a must to build China into a sports powerhouse as part of the Chinese dream. It is also what the people desire,” said the central reform group, led by Xi, who has targeted improving the sport economy as a key priority, even against the backdrop of recent market turmoil. The investment planned is a mind-boggling $850bn in the next decade.

Zhang Dazhong, chief executive of China’s biggest e-commerce firm, Alibaba, last year launched a sports offshoot called Alisports and told the South China Morning Post that the financial target would be reached easily.

Chadwick says: “These players going to China is about building a fan culture, they will improve the level of competence. What is also interesting is what the Chinese government and the provincial authorities are trying to do is to build sport campuses in all the major cities. The Chinese like the Manchester City model, with the Etihad campus and so on. It’s no surprise that’s where they’ve chosen to invest.”

Investments in European clubs are as much a fact-finding exercise as a financial investment and will no doubt lead to more cultural differences such as the sponsor Ledman rapidly backtracking on plans to force teams in Portugal’s second tier to include Chinese players in their starting line-ups.

The vast spending sprees of oil- and gas-rich Gulf states such as Qatar to invest rapidly in sport at home and abroad and the up-and-down efforts to grow the MLS in the US offer different lessons in the difficulty of moulding fan culture and building a quality product –some more relevant than others.

This is no standing start: Evergrande and Beijing Guoan attract average crowds of more than 40,000 and the former won the Asian Champions League in 2015. Into this heady brew, Premier League clubs and other European leagues are also trying to build their audience – with Serie A in particular enjoying a historical advantage following a rare misstep by the English top flight in initially limiting itself to pay TV.

For many years, basketball was seen to have stolen a march on football, with the NBA investing huge sums in promoting the sport and courts springing up across the country, but all that money has not produced a successor to Yao Ming, the NBA superstar who retired in 2011. Producing its own domestic heroes will be vital to the success of Chinese football.

Investors are also being urged to put money into building networks of coaching academies across the vast country, turbocharging investment in facilities and coaching. The plan also ties in with wider societal aims and, perhaps belated, concerns that driving Chinese teenagers to ever greater academic heights is taking its toll on their mental health.

Where President Xi leads, China’s peculiar form of state capitalism follows – with investment funds now poised to spend billions into a new assault on the world’s most popular sport. No sooner had Jianlin taken a strategic slice of Atlético Madrid than his company was buying the TV rights agency Infront, owned by Sepp Blatter’s nephew Philippe.

Then, as if by magic, he was appearing alongside Blatter in Zurich as he was re-elected to the Fifa presidency in May before his dramatic fall. While there is talk of reintroducing a continental rotation system to World Cup bidding, which would mitigate against China following a Qatar World Cup in 2022, it would be folly to underestimate the ability of Chinese commerce and diplomacy to alter that.

As outlined by the set text on the troubled growth of Chinese football, Bamboo Goalposts by Rowan Simons, China’s politics and culture have traditionally militated against team sports. In a country where gatherings of more than 10 people were expressly forbidden, forming a football pyramid from the ground up was impossible.

Xi’s masterplan aims to change all that, shifting the focus from racking up Olympic medals to improving the national football team’s abject record, and this eye-catching splurge on players is just the start. The chaos and confusion that led Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba to beat a hasty retreat in recent years might soon be a thing of the past given the longer-term strategy apparently underpinning the latest charge, but, as Chadwick says, it is unlikely to bear fruit overnight.

“People will take it much more seriously in 10 years’ time than they do today. It’s one thing having a successful league that people want to watch and another having a national team that can win the World Cup. The one thing they have to understand is the relationship between the two. This won’t happen overnight.”

In the meantime, expect much more seriously conspicuous consumption.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2016 11:13 pm 
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lavezzi on his way too .. It would be interesting to see how this will effect (long term) merchandise sale to the likes of United / Madrid who have huge following across asia .. Chinese clubs will have there own international superstars now and we may see this revolution across this belt .. Japan ? korea ? to follow ..toshiba samsung they all are billion dollars brand ..

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So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2016 11:36 pm 
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I think it's pretty safe to say within a few more years this will be the biggest league outside of Europe.

The biggest thing for them will be developing their own talent to the level where they can compete with the superstars who come in.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 2:08 pm 
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West Ham striker Nikica Jelavic has joined Chinese second division side Beijing Renhe for about £2m.

The 30-year-old Croatia international has made one Premier League start this season under compatriot Slaven Bilic.

He follows Chelsea's Ramires, who joined Jiangsu Suning for £25m last month, while striker Jackson Martinez joined Guangzhou Evergrande for £31m.

The Colombian left Atletico Madrid for the Chinese Super League side, breaking the Asian transfer record.

Jelavic signed for West Ham for £3m from Hull in August 2015, but has scored only once in the league despite making 12 appearances from the bench.

He previously played for Everton and Rangers.

Meanwhile, former Everton midfielder Tim Cahill is leaving Chinese football after his contract was terminated by Shanghai Shenhua.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 9:00 pm 
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Tevez offered 25million per annum .. and he rejected it ..

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pakrooney wrote:

So true mate ...he is consistently inconsistent throughout his united career ..but what if he turns consistent ..he will get around 40 goals...ATM im waiting for that time as his age is 24/25 :wait: ... :|
on Rooney ,Jan 16th, ..and as they rest is history


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:13 pm 
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Paris Saint-Germain forward Ezequiel Lavezzi has become the latest player to agree a move to Chinese football.

Hebei China Fortune have claimed the Argentine forward has agreed a two-year deal to play at the Qinhuangdao Olympic Sports Center Stadium.

Lavezzi is the latest in a line of European-based players to switch to the Chinese game and it has been previously reported he will earn £23.5m during his stay there.

Hebei have already recruited two former Premier League players in this transfer window in former Arsenal forward Gervinho and ex-Chelsea winger Gael Kakuta.

Stamford Bridge old boy Ramires, Jackson Martinez, Alex Teixeira - who had been a target for Liverpool - and Fredy Guarin have also moved to China.

Lavezzi has been with PSG for the last three-and-a-half seasons following a £23m move from Napoli in the summer of 2012.

Although now 30, Hebei have described the 48-cap striker as "the next Maradona" on social media ahead of the first round of Super League fixtures on March 4


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:22 am 
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Former Newcastle striker Obafemi Martins has become the latest high-profile signing to join the Chinese Super League.

Martins, 31, has left Major League Soccer side the Seattle Sounders to join Shanghai Greenland Shenhua.

"For me it's now time for a new challenge [in China]," Martins said after announcing the move.

"I've grown to appreciate the feeling I get when entering environments where I'm not a proven footballer."

Neither side has confirmed the move, but the Nigeria striker announced his departure from Seattle on his Twitter page.

Martins was linked with a move back to the Premier League in the January window, but British agent Tony Harris along with the player's attorney Soroosh Abdi brokered the deal taking the Super Eagle to China instead.

Martins, who joins Senegalese striker Demba Ba at the Shanghai club, becomes the latest high-profile player to make the switch to the cash-rich Super League.

Colombia striker Jackson Martinez, former Chelsea midfielder Ramires, Cameroon captain Stephane Mbia and ex-Serie A duo Gervinho and Fredy Guarin are among the other big Chinese signings in 2016.

The transfer window closes in China on 26 February.

Martins burst into the international limelight at Italian side Inter Milan before switching to Newcastle in August 2006. He scored 35 goals in his three seasons with the Magpies, later joining Birmingham City on loan in 2011.

The striker, who has also had spells in Germany, Russia and Spain, will be remembered for scoring Birmingham City's winner in their 2-1 Carling Cup final victory over Arsenal in 2011 - the club's first silverware since 1963.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 3:01 pm 
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Former PSG forward Ezequiel Lavezzi has revealed he snubbed interest from Manchester United and Chelsea in favour of China ‘project’.

The Argentina wideman last month penned a two-year deal with Hebei China Fortune and reports suggested he will earn £23.5million, after tax, during his stay in Asia.

It was the end of a three-and-a-half-year spell with Paris Saint-Germain for the 30-year-old, who was described by Hebei on social media as “the next Maradona”.

Lavezzi, who has joined former Arsenal forward Gervinho and ex-Chelsea winger Gael Kakuta at the Qinhuangdao Olympic Sports Center Stadium, claims he was offered the chance to move to Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge but opted instead for the “challenge” in the Far East.

“I could have signed for Inter, Chelsea or Manchester United,” Lavezzi told Canal+.

“But I made the decision to go to China. It’s an important choice for my career, I’m sure I’ll face many challenges here.

“I like the project to develop this club. It was that which convinced me to come to Hebei, as well as the financial aspect.

“I’m also fascinated by Chinese culture, so to come and play here is definitely an interesting challenge.”

Lavezzi, who signed for PSG for £23million from Napoli in the summer of 2012, has been capped 48 times by Argentina.


My guess is Inter, Chelsea & United were offering significantly less wages


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2016 5:04 pm 
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Hulk has joined SIPG, for a transfer fee of 48m and a pay package of 320k per week.

:ohmy: :|

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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2016 5:08 pm 
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These brazilians must be loving it just opened up a new market for them bet Ronaldinho is trying to get a move out there as someone will pay him a stupid wage to do tricks and flicks to entertain the crowd.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2016 5:12 pm 
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Do you think this is just a fad, like Anzhi were, or it will be here to stay?

I don't really know the reason for the sudden explosion of money in Chinese football. A group of wealthy Chinese businessmen just happened to all get involved in football clubs at the same time?

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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2016 5:37 pm 
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Serbinator wrote:
Do you think this is just a fad, like Anzhi were, or it will be here to stay?

I don't really know the reason for the sudden explosion of money in Chinese football. A group of wealthy Chinese businessmen just happened to all get involved in football clubs at the same time?


Chinese clubs have been dominating the Asian Champions League for a while now and the Chinese Government are very keen to start producing some quality home grown footballers and are putting money behind it to bring in coaches and build facilities that will allow them to compete at world cups in 10-15 years time.

State run investment funds are behind a lot of it they've been buying stakes in top European Clubs like Man City, Milan & Atletico Madrid the reason they've done this is they want to know what makes these clubs tick how do they operate commercially to bring in the top revenues basically learn and copy. This money coming in also means they've been able to attract top players and this isn't one club signing all the players it's 4 or 5 all making big money signings to help promote the game they haven't yet attracted the top European Players but it's only a matter of time imo as they have so much money.

I think if they keep doing what they're doing they have the potentially to be the best league outside of Europe in terms of quality and while I don't think they're anywhere near being a threat to EPL, Bundesliga, La Liga etc within 5 years I think they'll be more popular worldwide than MLS, A-League they just need to land a big European Star.

Zlatan, Rooney, Ronaldo in a year or 2's time might get a Beckham style offer that they just can't turn down which would open up a whole new market to them as Europe would start paying them some attention.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 11:04 pm 
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Watford have turned down a £38m offer for their striker Odion Ighalo from the free-spending Shanghai SIPG. The Chinese club broke their transfer record this week when they signed Hulk from Zenit St Petersburg for £46.1m but they are unlikely to add Ighalo to their squad after Watford’s refusal to even consider the offer.

Ighalo scored 17 goals in 42 appearances last season and has been linked with a move away from the club but the owner, Giampaolo Pozzo, is not considering selling the striker.

Watford have already rejected a bid for another forward, Troy Deeney, from Leicester City with Pozzo adamant he wants to hold on to both players. Ighalo has four years left on his contract.

Shanghai, who are managed by the former England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson, have the former Sunderland striker Asamoah Gyan in their squad as well as the newly arrived Hulk. Shanghai are fourth in the Chinese Super League after 15 games, 12 points behind the leaders Guangzhou Evergrande.

Watford, who have a new manager this season in Walter Mazzarri, after Quique Sanchez Flores left the club, kick off the Premier League season against Southampton on 13 August.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 7:22 pm 
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Graziano Pellè is set to swap Southampton for China in a £13m deal. The Italy striker’s destination is believed to be the Chinese Super League side Shandong Luneng in a move that would give Southampton a profit of around £4m on a player signed from Feyenoord two years ago.

Following an impressive Euro 2016, Pellè had been linked with a move to join the outgoing Italy manager Antonio Conte at Chelsea. He has a year remaining on his contract at Southampton, who were believed to have been reluctant to offer an extension.

The forward, who will be 31 next week, is understood to have been eyeing a move to China since January, which is part of the reason behind the timing of Southampton’s purchase of Charlie Austin from Queens Park Rangers.

Austin, a ready-made replacement, will compete with Jay Rodriguez and Shane Long in the attacking positions once Pellè’s move is complete.

Southampton are understood to be searching for a defensive midfielder to replace Victor Wanyama and signed Nathan Redmond from Norwich for £10m, days before they collected a club-record fee when Sadio Mané moved to Liverpool.


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 7:34 pm 
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Pelle for £13m sounds a good signing. Surprised Palace not interested as oppose to Benteke.

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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 7:49 pm 
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I thought fee looked a little low but I guess he's 31 and not sure what he's got left on his contract my guess is Southampton would want a lot more from a prem club.

Think Benteke is a good buy for Palace just think we have to accept £30m gets you slightly above average players now if you're doing prem to prem deal


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 8:59 pm 
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One year left on the contract.

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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 10:33 pm 
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Guess they're backing Austin, Long & Rodriguez to do the business for them next season might be the new manager wants more mobility up top as Pelle was a Koeman player


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Sat Jul 09, 2016 4:41 pm 
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The Newcastle United striker Papiss Cissé has left the club to join Chinese Super League club Shandong Luneng for an undisclosed fee.

The 31-year-old scored 44 goals in 131 appearances in four-and-a-half years with the club after joining from German outfit SC Freiburg in 2012.

“I want to put on record my thanks and appreciation for the Newcastle fans,” said Cissé on Twitter. “I will never forget them as long as I live and will be back as a supporter alongside them one day. I hope that the team are quickly back in the Premier League.”

The Italy and Southampton striker Graziano Pellè, who has one-year remaining on his current contract, has also been linked with a move to the Chinese Super League.

The forward, who will turn 31 next week, is understood not to have been offered a new contract by Southampton, who signed Charlie Austin from Queens Park Rangers in January.


Can we interest you in a big bushy haired central midfielder or a tattoo clad South American LB?


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 Post subject: Re: A Chinese Revolution
PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2016 4:14 pm 
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Former Italy striker Christian Vieri is planning to come out of retirement aged 43 to play in the Chinese Super League.

Vieri, who retired in 2009, was the world's most expensive player in 1999 when he moved from Lazio to Serie A side Inter Milan for £32m.

He scored 103 goals in 143 matches for Inter and made 49 international appearances, scoring 23 times.

"Huge news - Bobo is back. I've decided to go play in China," Vieri said in an Instagram video.

Brazil forward Hulk made a record £46.1m move to Super League side Shanghai SIPG in June as Chinese clubs spent almost £200m in their transfer window.


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