June 13, 2024

Chen Xuyuan and Other High-Ranking Chinese Football Officials Sentenced to Life in Prison for Sports Corruption Amidst Financial Struggles

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Chinese sports officials sentenced to 8 years in prison for bribery charges

The Chinese Football Association’s (CFA) former president, Chen Xuyuan, was sentenced to life in prison as part of the Communist Party’s crackdown on sports corruption. Other high-ranking officials received similar sentences for accepting bribes and financial crimes. The CFA Super League, which is largely backed by real estate firms, has been facing financial instability due to concerns about the financial health of these companies. Payments to players aimed at enhancing the league’s brand and potential in China and internationally have faced challenges due to these concerns.

Corruption in Chinese soccer has long been an issue, with allegations of payoffs to players and referees to influence match outcomes. There have also been reports of payments made to secure spots for players in training camps, including the national men’s squad, which is currently ranked 88th by FIFA. The women’s national team holds the 19th spot. The sport’s struggles in China are further compounded by economic slowdowns and government intervention in sports, culture, and private enterprises. These factors have hindered the country’s efforts to improve the competitiveness and success of its soccer programs.

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