China plans to build over 20,000 football training centres, renovate 70,000 pitches



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China football plans

With an eye to become a ‘football superpower’ by 2050, China is aiming to build over 20,000 football training centres nationwide. The Asian giant is also planning to renovate nearly 70,000 of its existing pitches. The move comes as China gears up to host the Winter Olympics in 2022.

According to a report in worldfootballinsider.com, China aims to bring 50 million children and adults into the game by 2020, with objectives also set out for 2030 and 2050. These include revitalizing youth initiatives and making football a bigger part of the education programs at primary and secondary schools.

The government has not disclosed the exact amount that it plans to invest in the wide-ranging project, but the scale would indicate investments worth hundreds of millions of dollars. President Xi Jinping has made no secret of his desire to make China successful on the world football stage, and has reportedly made this goal a top priority.

The government is clearly keen to capitalize on the massive growth in the Chinese football market. The Chinese Super League spent a staggering $300 million-plus in the winter transfer window, topping spending by English Premier League clubs for the first time.

The Chinese Football Association laid out its plans on April 11, part of the country’s efforts to vastly improve its men’s and women’s national football teams; the men have only ever qualified for the 2002 World Cup.

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