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Beijing, Shanghai among 10 cities to host 2023 Asian Cup

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Beijing and Shanghai are among 10 Chinese cities that will host the Asian Cup finals in 2023, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) said on Saturday.

China orienteering team disqualified from world military games

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China's orienteering team has been disqualified from this year's Military World Games hosted by the mainland following accusations of cheating at an event, according to a statement by the sport's international association.

Cannavaro laments growing gap between China and Japan

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Fabio Cannavaro cast an envious glance at the strength of Japanese football as he picked over the bones of Guangzhou Evergrande's Asian Champions League semi-final exit on Wednesday evening, after Chinese clubs again fell short in the continental championship. It has been four years since Guangzhou reached the final of the competition, when the club won the second of their two continental crowns, but their hopes of ending that drought came unstuck when they lost to Urawa Red Diamonds. A Shinzo Koroki header completed a 3-0 aggregate win for the J.League side, who have reached the final for the second time in three years despite languishing in the lower reaches of their domestic league this season. Urawa's success throws into sharp focus the contrast between standards of play in Japan and China, two nations who should be major on-field rivals. But while the Chinese continue to invest heavily in the sport, Cannavaro believes the gulf has grown and is likely to increase further. "I think there didn't used to be such a gap between Japanese and Chinese teams, but the gap has become wider in the past 20 years," the Italian told reporters after the match. "The Japanese have invested a lot of funds in cultivating football players in the past and they have taken the lead with that strategy. "But in our experience they have more advantages in terms of their physical condition, which could be seen today. Japanese players, when they are competing, they are more engaged and focussed and we can learn from them." Money has poured into the Chinese game in recent years as private business has sought to deliver on president Xi Jinping's desire to see the country become a force in the global game.

China confirmed as 2023 Asian Cup hosts

HONG KONG (Reuters) - China's desire to showcase its ability as a future World Cup host received a boost on Thursday as the Asian Football Confederation handed the country the rights to the Asian Cup finals in 2023.

Italy may discuss staging Serie A match in China

MILAN (Reuters) - Italian football leaders could discuss staging a Serie A match in China when they meet officials from the Asian country this weekend, sources close to the matter told Reuters on Friday.

Soccer - No overnight solutions for China's problems, says Cannavaro

(Reuters) - China coach Fabio Cannavaro has called for a long-term approach and time to build a fresh identity after tasting defeat in his first game in charge against Thailand in the China Cup in Nanning on Thursday.

Barca bets big on India in bid for global expansion

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Soccer is slowly but surely getting traction in India and Barcelona see the world's second most populous nation as a key part of their global expansion plans, the Spanish side's Asia Pacific Director General Jordi Camps has told Reuters.

Boot camp casts shadow over Chinese Super League run-in

HONG KONG (Reuters) - China's latest attempt to end their long World Cup exile is casting a long shadow over the last few weeks of the Chinese Super League season, with title hopefuls Shanghai SIPG among clubs to have lost players to an under-25 boot camp.

Hiddink appointed coach of Chinese Olympic team

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Guus Hiddink has been tasked with ensuring China qualify for the finals of the 2020 Olympic Games football tournament after the former Real Madrid and Netherlands coach was handed the reins of the country's under 21 team on Monday.