And, football star Zhang Chengdong has made his debut for Spain’s Rayo Vallecano in midweek – becoming the first Chinese player to play in Spain’s top division, La Liga.
In an exclusive interview with CCTV’s Dan Williams, Zhang said he now hopes he can go on and become a valuable member of the squad.
Follow Dan Williams on Twitter @Danielclearcut
First Chinese player makes debut in Spain's top football divisionFootball star Zhang Chengdong has made his debut for Spain's Rayo Vallecano in midweek - becoming the first Chinese player to play in Spain's top division, La Liga. In an exclusive interview with CCTV's Dan Williams, he said he now hopes he can go on and become a valuable member of the squad.
He’s back at training, but with renewed vigor. Five months after signing for Rayo Vallecano, Zhang Chengdong is celebrating a personal milestone having made his full first team debut for the La Liga club.
The Chinese international played for more than an hour in the Spanish cup competition, the Copa del Rey, helping his side to a 2-0 victory over Getafe.
“When I first heard that I was going to play in the first game, especially starting at left-back, I was very excited. Of course, I was a little bit nervous, but after I entered the pitch and touched the ball, I gradually got better. Overall, I think I did ok in my first game,” Zhang says.
It appears, the home fans have taken to the left -back with the Rayo supporters cheering Zhang’s every move.
Zhang admits it has been a challenging learning curve since arriving in Madrid. But it would look as though he did enough during the game to impress the coach, Paco Jemez.
Zhang hopes his achievements in Spain will inspire more Chinese players to follow his lead. But he also has his own dreams and aspirations and he’s determined to accomplish them.