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SBD Global/July 10, 2012/International Football

Experts Warn Chinese Super League Spending Is Unsustainable

Chinese football is "basking in an unusually positive period," but experts warn the "galactico-style transfer policy is unsustainable and investment is being ploughed into the wrong areas," according to Patrick Johnston of REUTERS. After enticing popular players such as Ivory Coast forward Didier Drogba from the "sport's traditional power bases of Europe," China's rich football club owners are enjoying the "boom time and flush with global media interest." Drogba will earn a reported $300,000 a week for his services in Shanghai. The Shenhuas are not the only team "lavishly spending." Italian Word Cup winner Marcelo Lippi coaches Chinese Super League leaders Guangzhou Evergrande who have Conco, the "Argentine previously the best-paid player in the league." There are fears about the long-term future of "such profligate spending." Shanghai football Commentator Lou Yichen said, "We always hope that Chinese football can fly high in a short period of time, and be able to catch up with our neighbours such as Japan and South Korea. But even though we have such good thoughts, to a large extent we do not know in what way or to take which road to achieve such a target." The Chinese way though "rarely involves patience." The "global superpower is used to seeing instant results and struggle to see why this is not the way in soccer" (REUTERS, 7/9).
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