Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Warning could mean (Chinese) soccer bubble is about to burst
by Paul Kennedy, January 5th, 2017 7:31PM
Subscribe to Soccer World Daily

TAGS:  alex morgan, atletico madrid, china, france, italy, manchester city, soccer business


Wild spending by Chinese Super League clubs -- including massive deals for Oscar and Carlos Tevez by rival Shanghai clubs -- has to stop.

That warning isn't coming from European officials, fearful of the inflationary pressure on transfer fees and salaries, but from the Chinese Sports General Administration, which issued a statement on Thursday that it will “regulate and restrain high-priced signings, and make reasonable restrictions on players’ high incomes."

The statement accusing clubs of "burning money" comes a month after an editorial by the ruling Communist Party’s official newspaper, the People’s Daily, critical of the spending by Super League clubs on foreign players and coaches had reached almost $500 million.

The irony, of course, is that the boom was triggered when Chinese president Xi Jinping, a big soccer fan, supported efforts to transform the country into great soccer power. At the grassroots level, that has meant the investment of huge sums in soccer schools. But national and internationally, Chinese investors have been encouraged to center their sports and entertainment portfolios on soccer properties.

Reuters quoted an unnamed official as saying concerns were centered on "large scale overseas acquisitions, the grave phenomenon of clubs burning money, salaries that are too high for foreign players, not attaching importance to youth training, and only emphasizing short-term achievements and neglecting long-term development."

To attack the problem, the Sports General Administration is looking at imposing caps on transfer fees and limit fees paid to agents and brokers for facilitating agreements -- wasted money it wants directed to youth development.

Bloomberg also reported that the Sports General Administration's warning isn't just limited to domestic spending, suggesting it will take aim at overseas soccer spending.

What European clubs gain from an easing of the inflationary pressure on salaries and transfer fees might be offset by reduced Chinese investment in struggling European clubs that has been termed "a blessing."

Chinese investors have bought or attempted to buy majority or minority positions in a host of European clubs, including Manchester City, Inter Milan, AC Milan and Atletico Madrid.

Lyon's acquisition of Alex Morgan coincided with a deal club president Jean-Michel Aulas reached with China's IDG Capital to invest 100 million euros ($120 million) into Lyon in return for a 20 percent interest in the club.

Investment in smaller European clubs has come as a lifesaver, allowing them to pay off or restructure debt. Without it, the soccer bubble economy could burst.

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Off The Post
Mbappe and the allure of Real Madrid    
The biggest transfer saga of the summer will be that of 18-year-old Monaco forward Kylian Mbappe, ...
Secrets to the French soccer revolution, seven years after Knysna    
Tuesday marked the seventh anniversary of the French player revolt at Knysna, the South African training ...
Rule-change proposals: The final whistle idea makes sense     
Some of the latest rule-change proposals, which include no rebounds on penalty kicks, are radical enough ...
Where the VAR 'controversy' is misguided -- and where it isn't    
The first thing to say about the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) system being used at the ...
FIFA scandals enter new phase as former banker admits bribe payments    
Former Swiss bank executive Jorge Luis Arzuaga has admitted establishing accounts and depositing funds as bribe ...
The Development Academies: The saga ends    
Well, actually, the Development Academies (DA) saga does not end here, but my story ends. I ...
Mostly tight World Cup qualifying races as Europe breaks for summer    
The long European season is finally over. National teams will break for the summer before the ...
American coach Dan Gaspar heads to third World Cup as Iran books Russia tickets     
Iran clinching a spot at the 2018 World Cup means American coach Dan Gaspar is heading ...
After Trump Tower and the Donald, Football League takes cup draw to Bangkok    
Soccer is an international sport with interest none bigger than in English soccer. The EPL's financial ...
Klopp clanger all too familiar for Liverpool fans    
Two years into his stint as Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp -- a prolific striker as a ...
>> Off The Post Archives