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Chinese Check
Reuters, February 25th, 2009 4:15PM

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Saying that the Chinese federation puts its coaching candidates through the paces could be the understatement of the day, as Reuters reports that four top candidates for its national team coach position "have been sent to a closed training base where each will have give a 15-minute presentation and undergo a three-hour written test on their knowledge of education, management and sport."

With past coaches having endured "savage abuse as the nation of soccer enthusiasts took out their frustrations over the repeated failure of the national team," it seems to be either one of the toughest jobs in soccer, the one nobody seems to really want, or both.

Perhaps responding to the fact that FIFA president Sepp Blatter "last year criticized China for hiring foreign coaches and then sacking them as soon as results went against them," this time around all four candidates are natives, including interim coach Yin Tiesheng, who himself said he's "not very confident."

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