Sports / Soccer

China's most expensive footballer risks missing Super League

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-06-25 11:28

TIANJIN - China's most expensive footballer Sun Ke risks missing the Chinese Super League (CSL) over a sponsor-club row.

Sun did not appear in Teda's 3-0 home loss to Chongqing in Wednesday's CSL game, as his new club has yet to register him at the Chinese Football Association.

The China international joined Tianjin Teda from Jiangsu Sainty on a domestic record 66 million yuan (10.6 million U.S. dollars) last Thursday.

The midfielder will also earn 8 million yuan (1.2 million dollars) a year and the contract runs until 2020, a Teda official told Xinhua.

However, Sun's future took a sharp turn on Wednesday when reports said Tianjin Teda club was not willing to accept Sun, whose transfer was directly handled by Teda's major sponsor despite the club's opposition.

Quanjian, the sponsor, is a company selling healthcare products and at times accused of multi-level marketing and doubtful product effects. Adding its name to the club early this year had been protested by Teda fans.

At the same time, the conflict between Teda and Quanjian surfaced with the latter deciding to withdraw its sponsorship Wednesday.

If Quanjian leaves Teda, Sun risks sitting out the season since Teda already openly stood against the transfer.

"Sun Ke's transfer is so expensive and his salary is too high. He would make 10 times as much as our top players. If he comes to the club, how will other players feel?" Teda technical director Chen Jingang said.

Sun made his name in the Asian Cup in January where the 25-year-old scored three goals and was considered a promising star in the national team and to have the talent to test himself in Europe.

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