Tianjin Teda FC, a Chinese Super League (CSL) team, has just finalized a domestic record deal to land Sun Ke from Jiangsu Sainty FC at 66 million yuan 66 million yuan (10.6 million U.S. dollars) last Thursday. However, China's current most expensive footballer Sun Ke is under the risk of missing the Chinese Super League (CSL) due to clash between Tianjin Teda FC and its sponsor Quanjian Group.
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 Quanjian despite the club's opposition. Accordingly, Sun did not appear in Teda's 3-0 home loss to Chongqing Lifan in Wednesday's CSL game, as his new club has yet to register him at the Chinese Football Association.
At the same time, the conflict between Teda and Quanjian surfaced with the latter threatening to withdraw its sponsorship. If Quanjian leaves Teda, Sun risks sitting out the season since Teda already openly stood against the transfer.
As reported, the major divergence between the sides is caused by Quanjian’s eagerness to take part in the operation of the club while the stakeholders hold opposite opinion. And the heads of Tianjin Teda see Sun’s deal as an approach by Quanjian to more presence in the decision making at the club. In addition, officials fear that the deal would cause disorder as Sun’s transfer is so expensive and his payment 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.
There has not yet conclusion to this incident but as the conflict progresses it will jeopardize any party involves. As Quanjian stated, they would end the sponsorship if no agreement reached between the sides. The possibility that China’s most expensive footballer could miss the CSL has triggered the alarming clock for the rising sport in China. Moreover, the investment made by Alibaba to fund Guangzhou Evergrande FC has set a positive example for investors to play an invisible but significant role in professional football-related entity.