When China played in the Qatar World Cup qualifying match in Qatar in September 2022, all eyes were on the two players.
Nico Enares, 26, was born in London, while Alixon, 30, was a Brazilian citizen until a few months ago.
The two are part of China’s 24-man squad, which won a five-match series against Maldives in September.
Citizenship on Demand
Alexson scored two goals in the last half of his first game to give the team a breakthrough.
It was the first time in Chinese history that a foreigner had taken Chinese citizenship and played a match for China against another country. Another London-based player, Enaris, had not had a chance to play in the match.
This is a big step. A country with a population of one billion forty million is ready to add ‘foreign’ players to its national team to qualify for the World Cup since 2002.
Such an idea has been debated many times but has been implemented in 2019. In addition to the tremendous financial benefits of foreign players, Chinese citizenship was also a prerequisite for Chinese team head coach Marcelo Lippi to build a team.
Italy’s World Cup-winning legend has stepped down as coach after China’s disappointing performance in the Asia Cup. But after 119 days, he returned to the same position again.
Since then, foreign players have been a big topic for the Chinese citizenship.
Although Elixon and Enares are two players who have been inducted into the national team, they are not the only players who have acquired or are taking Chinese citizenship in the past few months.
How did they do that? Aside from a few FIFA principles, they probably have the following six points to consider:
1 one of the parents should and must be Chinese
Obviously, China wants to improve its performance in football. But he does not want to change his Chinese identity.
So how will the foreigners who have been given Chinese citizenship be introduced? China has resorted to Chinese heritage for this.
In January of this year, the Beijing Snowbone Guan Football Club, proudly announcing an agreement with Nico Enares and John Howe Sitter, introduced the two as Chinese. went.
Thus, they are the first two foreign players in the history of Chinese football who started to play football in China after acquiring Chinese citizenship.
None of them have been to China before, but both have been eligible to play for the Chinese national team because of their own Chinese mothers.
Both have expressed great joy over the project after playing for a few months in China.
“My mother was born in China,” Hou Sweater told Chinese media. It will be a great honor for my family if I play for China. ‘
On the other hand, Enares said, “I always knew that my roots were in China”.
Being trained by a leading European club 2
Although granting Chinese citizenship to foreign players has become a policy in Chinese football, this aspirant of playing in China should be a good player by the standards of the Chinese club, and for this, the authorities will have to work hard. Has to do two.
The priority at the moment is to somehow enable China’s football team to reach the World Cup. The last time the Chinese team reached the World Cup in 2002 was to lose three of their three matches without scoring any goals. Even his under-20 team has not qualified since 2005.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has created a huge training system at the national level to promote youth football. But foreign players can give them short-term success.
Earnest is an Arsenal coach for England, while Hou Sweater started his career with Rosenberg, a Norwegian football club.
They have both played in youth teams in their respective countries.
Guangzhou Xiao-Grande, who became the seven-time champion of the Chinese Super League, signed a deal with England’s Tice Browning in February this year, his estranged grandfather allegedly belonging to Gong Dang and emigrating to Britain in the sixties. ۔
Chinese media reported in July that they had adopted Chinese citizenship, but FIFA was reviewing the matter.
Do well in the Chinese club 3
In August this year, China went a step further and added Brazilian player Allison to the team. He has no cultural or heritage with China but he has been playing in China for six years.
This means that even if there is no ethnic Chinese, the doors of the Chinese national team will not be closed for you.
Although for a country in which nationalism is full of quotas, it is a big deal to bring in such players from outside.
What makes this big player such a great example? He is the highest scorer in the Chinese Super League, scoring 103 goals.
Another player from Uruguay, Ricardo Gollart, has scored enough goals and is reportedly giving up his Brazilian passport and is in the process of obtaining a Chinese passport.
Abandon your real citizenship Club 4
Lionel Messi can play for Argentina with a Spanish passport but that is not the case in China.
There is no concept of dual citizenship in Chinese laws. This means that once Chinese citizenship is granted, you cannot hold a passport from another country.
The number of foreigners going to China is increasing, but the decision to give up British citizenship or British citizenship for Chinese passports shows a lot about China’s growing power or in football in China. Indicates the probability of receiving a large sum of money.
Two years ago, the Chinese clubs were paying so much money to foreign players that the Chinese Football Association began to impose a 100 percent tax on bringing in non-Chinese players.
Elixon’s annual revenue in 2019 is $ 10 million. So far he has been invited to play a friendly match in Brazil but has not played in that match.
You must have a Chinese style name 5
If a Chinese player does not speak the best Chinese language, then at least it should have a Chinese name so that Chinese fans can shout it.
Those who remember Asian football in the late nineties or early years will remember that Japan also started giving citizenship to its players.
The same goes for China but a little differently.
Nico Eneres’ Chinese name is’ Lee K ‘, which is a translation of his English name and Alican is now’ I Kisan ‘.
Hou Sweater has become Hu Yang Yang after taking Chinese citizenship. But this is the original Chinese name he derived from his mother.
Must learn Chinese anthem 6
‘Step up! Step up! Step up! ‘
These are the words of the Chinese national anthem.
None of the players who have citizenship speak Chinese, but they are expected to be able to at least sing.
According to the China Football Association, it is the least prerequisite for those joining the Chinese team to do so. And not just the anthem but also the match for China.
Therefore, China is hoping that the inclusion of ‘local players’ and ‘foreign’ players will allow China’s national anthem to be heard at least a few times in 2022.