China to curb record spending on foreign players, support local talent

Source: Xinhua| 2017-05-25 14:43:47|Editor: An
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BEIJING, May 25 (Xinhua) -- China is set to take steps to bring down soaring amounts of transfer spending, especially on foreign players, and at the same time to support the development of local players, as the Chinese Football Association (CFA) announced the strongest polices ever set out to these ends on Wednesday.

"To benefit the healthy and steady development of professional football leagues and curb irrational spending on players, those clubs which are in the red should pay the same sums of money as their spending on buying players into Chinese Football Development Fund. The money will be used on local youth players and the promotion of football in China," the Chinese football authority said.

The new policy will be introduced starting from the coming summer transfer window.

China has shocked the football world with its phenomenal buying power as its clubs broke the Asian transfer record five times in recent years. The latest came in January when Shanghai SIPG reportedly paid Chelsea 61 million euros (about 65 million U.S. dollars) for Brazilian midfielder Oscar to link him up with his Brazilian compatriot Hulk.

At the same time, the CFA will implement another more direct policy to help local young players by forcing the clubs to field more U23 players on the pitch.

"From the 2018 season, all top-tier and second division clubs should field the same number of local U23 players as foreign players in each game," the football governing body said in another statement.

Earlier this year, the CFA issued two rules which aimed to cut the numbers of foreign players allowed in top-tier teams and force the teams to give more chances to local youngsters.

Under the previous rules, all 16 teams in the Chinese Super League are allowed to sign a maximum of 5 foreign players. All five can be named in the 18-man match-day roster but only 4 can take the field at any one time, and 1 of those players has to be from an Asian nation.

But this season, teams can still sign 5 foreign players from anywhere in the world as the 'Asian quota' has been abolished, but only 3 can be included in match-day rosters.

According to the CFA, specific measures to implement the two regulations will be announced later.