Chinese soccer aims to be among world top teams by 2050

Updated: 2016-04-11 15:46


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Chinese soccer aims to be among world top teams by 2050

Huang Bowen's opening goal in a World Cup qualifier against Qatar on March 29 helped China secure a berth in Asia's final qualifying round after 15 years. The country aims to become a world leading team by 20150, said a new plan. [Photo by Wu Zhizhao/For China Daily]

BEIJING -- Chinese soccer is expected to edge its way into the world leading teams by 2050, according to a plan released by China's National Development and Reform Commission on Monday.

According to the Notice of Publishing The Mid- and Long-Term Development Plan for Chinese Soccer, the sport's growth will go through three phases.

Firstly, a foundation for the sport is going to be laid by 2020.

"People's needs for the sport should be met, whether it is need for playing fields, time or fund," said the Notice. "Soccer's development will be accelerated in schools. The number of schools with a specialty in soccer will reach 20,000 and there will be over 30 million primary and middle school students who often play soccer."

In the second phase which is between 2021 and 2030, China hopes soccer already grows into a sport with firm foundations and becomes "an important engine of the sports industry" while the national men's team stand out in Asia and women's team return to the leading powers in the world.

In the third phase that spans the next 20 years, the most populous country will "go all out to realize the goals of being the top class soccer nation and all-round development of Chinese soccer."

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