× Sports Football Rugby Olympics Volleyball and Handball Cricket Boxing Golf Hockey Tennis Gossip & Rumours World Cup 2018 Basketball Athletics Sports Premier League Eliud Kipchoge Women in Sports Unique Sports Opinion Motorsport Videos Podcasts E-Paper Lifestyle & Entertainment Nairobian Entertainment Eve Woman Travelog TV Stations KTN Home KTN News BTV KTN Farmers TV Radio Stations Radio Maisha Spice FM Vybez Radio Enterprise VAS E-Learning Digger Classified Jobs Games Crosswords Sudoku The Standard Group Corporate Contact Us Rate Card Vacancies DCX O.M Portal Corporate Email RMS
×
SPORTS

China puts league on hold to boost chances of reaching World Cup for first time in 20 years

FOOTBALL By Reuters | July 6th 2021
Chinese head coach Li Tie (1st R) celebrates with his players after China beat Syria to qualify for the final round of FIFA World Cup Asian qualifiers in Sharjah, the UAE, June 15, 2021. (Xinhua)

China will put its domestic football league on hold for more than three months to boost the national team's chances of reaching the World Cup finals for the first time in 20 years.

The Chinese Football Association said the league will recommence on July 15 and run until Aug. 12 before taking a break until Dec. 1.

The hiatus will allow national team coach Li Tie to prepare his team for the 2022 World Cup qualifiers, with China drawn with Japan, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Vietnam in Group B of the third round of Asia's preliminaries.

Matches are to be played on a home-and-away basis and with strict quarantine regulations in place in China play in the Chinese Super League (CSL) would be seriously affected.

China, who have not qualified for the World Cup since making their debut in 2002, are scheduled to begin the next phase of qualifying against Australia on Sept. 2.

The CSL had initially been scheduled to resume on June 21 following China's involvement in the second round of Asian qualifying for Qatar 2022.

However, requirements for the squad to enter quarantine after a last-minute switch saw the qualifiers moved to the United Arab Emirates from Suzhou, resulting in the delay to the domestic league campaign.

CSL games will continue to be played in two groups in centralised biosecure hubs, with the top four in each group advancing to the championship round.

The Chinese FA Cup will start on July 31 and continue throughout the league shutdown with the final slated for Nov. 13 or the following day.

Share this story
Semenya vows to fight on but has uncertain future
Caster Semenya vowed to continue her fight against the ban that prevents her from competing in her preferred 800m event after she failed in a bid to q
Olympics: Japan arranging opening ceremony without spectators except VIPs
Japan's government is arranging for the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony to be held with only a reduced number of VIP spectators, the Asahi newspaper r
.
RECOMMENDED NEWS
Feedback