Chinese Super League Rumors: Guangzhou Evergrande Eyes Import-less Roster by 2020
Six-straight Chinese Super League champions Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao FC is planning to field an import-less roster to the China top-flight competitions by the year 2020, according to latest reports.
Evergrande, nicknamed the "Manchester United of Asia", is currently the region's most powerful squad and has consistently shown it by winning the last six CSL titles and claiming two AFC Champions League trophies in the last four years.
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One of the factors that enabled the club to reach their goals is their dominating import lineup, which has Colombian striker Jackson Martinez and Brazilians Paulinho, Ricardo Goulart, and Alan Carvalho at the moment.
However, The Sun reported that Guangzhou has recently "laid out plans to curb their lavish funding and instead focus on homegrown players".
Evergrande Real Estate Group chairman and club executive Xu Jiayin has told reporters in a recent interview that they are planning to "strip out all foreign players by the end of this decade" and just develop their own local players.
"In my view, the ideal all-Chinese squad for Evergrande is composed of a world top manager and all native players," said Xu, via the Pulse. "Our purpose is to contribute to the development of Chinese football and all our work needs to be focused on this."
The Southern China Tigers are now being managed by World Cup-winning manager and former Brazil national team coach Luiz Felipe Scolari, who has led the team to two CSL championships, one Champions League trophy, and one Chinese FA Super Cup title in his so far one-and-a-half years of tenure.
Xu's comments came after the Chinese Football Association announced that they are going to regulate foreign player signings in the country to avoid clubs from overspending, which would result in bankruptcy in the long term.
The CFA is set to implement a new policy of only three imports per team playing at the same time on the pitch per game. It was a decrease from the previous four imports per club simultaneously suited up on the field.
Also, according to the CFA, one under-23 Chinese footballer must also be in the starting lineup of every squad or else the club violating the rule will "automatically forfeit games 3-0" in the upcoming season.