Latest News

Back to Latest News back


Chinese Football Association disqualifies six clubs over financial problems

Chinese Football Association disqualifies six clubs over financial problems
April 1, 2021

The Chinese Football Association (CFA) has disqualified six clubs from taking part in its professional leagues for the 2021 season, as a result of financial problems.

Following years of overspending by many clubs, the disqualifications are part of a longer-term move by the CFA to tackle financial mismanagement within its football leagues.

In recent seasons, the association has been demanding that clubs meet stricter financial criteria before taking part in league seasons. It has also introduced measures including salary and spending caps.

The clubs disqualified this season are Chinese Super League champions Jiangsu FC; second-tier China League One clubs Beijing Renhe, Inner Mongolia Zhongyou and Taizhou Yuanda; and two clubs from the third tier, Jiangsu Yancheng and Shenzhen Bogang.

Another Super League team that was threatened with disqualification, Tianjin Jinmen Tigers, met the CFA’s qualification criteria in time to qualify for this season. Local media reported that a body linked to the Tianjin local government is taking over the club.

News service Xinhua reported that the CFA pointed out the number of clubs disqualified this year was significantly down on the 16 that suffered the same fate last year. The association said this year’s disqualified teams had been affected by financial problems at their owners, the business downturn caused by the pandemic, and the requirements to play the leagues within bio-secure bubbles.

Jiangsu, which was formerly run by troubled Chinese retail and sports group Suning, is reported not to be completely disbanded yet, despite the disqualification and last month announcing its shock ‘ceasing of operations’. The club has been looking for an investor to keep it alive.

Chinese sports news service Titan Sports Plus reported that three of the six disqualified clubs this year are, or were, owned by companies that also have teams in European football. Suning owns Inter Milan, Beijing Renhe owner Renhe owns English team Reading, and Shenzhen Bogang’s owner Palm Sports owns English team West Bromwich Albion.

Xinhua also reported yesterday that, in another sign of the financial problems within Chinese club football, the team bus of bankrupt former second-tier team Liaoning Hongyun is to be auctioned to pay unpaid player wages.

The 2021 CSL season is to begin on 20th April. Like last season, Coronavirus restrictions will see it entirely hosted in two cities - Suzhou, in Jiangsu province, and Guangzhou, in Guangzhou province.

Image: Jiangsu Suning secure the 2020 Chinese Super League title. Credit: Xinhua.

Related Articles

21st March 2021 - Asian venues top StadiumDB Stadium of the Year award

2nd March 2021 - Chinese Super League champions ceases operations in blow to nation’s football aspirations

8th February 2021 - IOC President says Beijing 2022 will ‘transform winter sports’

13th January 2021 - Chinese F1 Grand Prix postponed to second half of 2021

30th December 2020 - Almost half of China’s 1.4 billion population spend less than US$150 a year on leisure activities

21st December 2020 - Asian Football Confederation announces renewal of Continental Tyres partnership

30th November 2020 - Design revealed for new 63,000-seat Dalian Stadium

6th August 2020 - World Health Organization says large crowds for sporting events are unrealistic this year

15th September 2020 - New Shanghai football stadium ready for match action

23rd August 2020 - Plans unveiled for new football stadium in China’s ancient capital

10th July 2020 - China bans international sporting events until 2021

1st May 2020 - China looks to FIFA World Cup hosting with new football stadia

17th April 2020 - Construction starts on new Guangzhou stadium

4th March 2020 - Coronavirus fears sees AFL cancel Shanghai fixture

12th February 2020 - Coronavirus continues to impact China’s sports events

25th October 2019 - China blacks out coverage of opening games of NBA season

6th June 2019 - China named 2023 AFC Asian Cup hosts

26th February 2016 - China Football Association regains governance control from Chinese Government

4th January 2016 - China plans 2023 AFC Asian Cup hosting with potential FIFA World Cup bid to follow

18th August 2015 - Chinese Football Association to be independent of government

23rd February 2010 - Chinese Football Clubs relegated for match-fixing

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

METRA Australia

With industry leading solutions in design and durability you can improve your facilities with our access control operations, payment systems and flexible personal locker storage solutions. Your…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Fitness / Recreation / Security



Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks



BODY BIKE® International is a leading manufacturer of indoor bikes with a 20-year track record of creating the best indoor bikes. Stay connected with Body Bike Australia…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness



Technogym is the leading company in the Wellness and Fitness field all over the world. With 2,200 employees, 14 branches in Europe, U.S., South America, Asia  and Australia, Technogym exports its…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness


Yellowbox Lockers

Yellowbox is an Australian technology company that has developed smart locker technology operated through an app with a focus on experience for users and facility managers. Found at Beaches, Aquatic…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Entertainment / Retail / Security


BioLab Australia Pty Ltd

BioGuard is Australia and New Zealand’s most trusted supplier of premium, innovative and affordable commercial water treatment systems and chemicals. BioGuard offers a comprehensive range of…

read more

Aquatics / Technology / Waterparks



Playrope Aqua-Fun, are the Australian & New Zealand exclusive distributors for Vortex Aquatic Structures International, the world leader in aquatic playgrounds and urban water landscapes.…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Parks / Play / Recreation



As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Events / Sport / Ticketing


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business