SPORTS Nine football clubs forced to quit China's professional leagues due to financial ruin


Nine football clubs forced to quit China's professional leagues due to financial ruin


14:54, February 05, 2020

Pa Dibba (L) of Shanghai Shenxin celebrates his goal during the 6th round match of China Super League One against Guizhou Hengfeng in Guiyang, southwest China's Guizhou Province, on April 20, 2019. (Photos: Xinhua)

Three 2nd-tier and six 3rd-tier clubs were disqualified for next season's Chinese professional league matches after failing to pay salaries of players, coaches and staff on time.

BEIJING, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Nine clubs will not be eligible to take part in China's professional football league for the upcoming season as they have failed to pay the salaries of their players, coaches and staff on time, the Chinese Football Association (CFA) said on Tuesday.

Among them are three second-tier league clubs - Sichuan Longfor, Shanghai Shenxin and Guangdong Southern Tigers - and six third-tier league teams.

These clubs "failed to submit, by February 3, 2020, the confirmation forms for full payment of coaches, athletes and staff wages and bonuses for 2019," the CFA said in a statement on its website.

CFA president Chen Xuyuan attends the 11th Chinese Football Association membership conference at the Xianghe National Football Training Center in Xianghe, north China's Hebei Province, Aug. 22, 2019.

The CFA announced last October that failure to pay salaries of players, coaches and staff on time will result in disqualification for next season's professional league matches.

Insiders say the policy, together with a salary cap to be implemented from the 2020 season, is aimed to curb excessive spending by Chinese clubs.

According to a survey, the average income of China's third-tier league clubs in 2018 was only nine million yuan (about 1.285 million US dollars), while their average salary expenditure reached eight million yuan, and with other expenses, the average loss of each club was about 20 million yuan. For second-tier league teams, the average loss also reached 20 million yuan.

"Our clubs had too much money burned and our professional football has not been run in a sustainable way," CFA chairman Chen Xuyuan told Xinhua in December last year.

"If we don't take timely action, I fear it will collapse."

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