Chinese football success still elusive following year of investments

Global Business

China set new records in football in 2016, spending unprecedented amounts of money snapping up players and clubs.

But is the investment spree doing anything for President Xi Jinping’s dreams of building a world beating national team?

CCTV America’s Owen Fairclough reports.

Chinese football success still elusive following year of investments

China set new records in football in 2016, spending unprecedented amounts of money snapping up players and clubs. But is the investment spree doing anything for President Xi Jinping’s dreams of building a world beating national team? CCTV America’s Owen Fairclough reports.

A Brazilian star who has broken new ground in China before even kicking a ball.

Oscar’s move from English club Chelsea to Shanghai SIPG for a reported $62 million set a new Asian transfer record.

It had already been broken four times this year, as a younger generation of stars headed to China to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars a week.

The investment is luring top European coaches, too.

China is also spending abroad. Last summer, Chinese investors bought Italy’s AC Milan and took a majority stake in city rivals Internazionale – the most prestigious European acquisition yet.

The Chinese football revolution is part of President’s Xi Jinping aim to win the World Cup.

But it doesn’t look good. A string of defeats left the national team at bottom of its qualifying group for the 2018 tournament.

But with 30 million children expected to be playing the game by 2020, it’s hoped the world’s most populous nation can grow a new generation of stars to compete with the best.