Zhang Chengdong, a Chinese international striker, has signed a one-year loan with La Liga side Rayo Vallecano FC from China’s Beijing Guo’an, marking him the first Chinese footballer to join Spanish top-flight football league.
Zhang is reported to be joining up with his new teammates in Nanjing where Rayo Vallecano will play an exhibition match with Real Sociedad on July 29. And he is likely to make his debut for the La Liga side within China in the match sponsored by Qbao which is currently a sponsor of both clubs.
Qbao, an online media company in China, has reportedly played a major part in Zhang’s signing with Rayo Vallecano. With year-long sponsorship to the Spanish club, Qbao manages to promote its brand awareness and brand influence by placing name onto the shirts of La Liga duo. And this time with Zhang’s eye-catching move to Spanish top tier football alongside the exhibition match called “Qbao Derby”, Qbao’s efforts to reach exposure have been impressive by far.
Chinese fans and media, however, start concerning about Zhang Chengdong’s future status in Spain especially with another Beijing Guo’an player Zhang Xizhe’s disappointing case, in which the Chinese promising starlet has returned from Bundesliga side Wolfsburg without playing a single minute in half a season. But what Qbao needs to concern is more about how to take advantage of the exposure that Zhang and other La Liga elements could generate.
There is no recent substantial case study for Qbao to look into as a Chinese company named Kejian did help land two former Chinese international players in Premier League more than a decade ago but failed to survive in the following years. Accordingly, there might be challenging difficulties for Qbao to break through in the marketing course of Zhang’s campaign in Spain. But luckily Zhang’s ambitious desire to play abroad and supporters’ wish for more Chinese players to be recognized by top European football market will empower Qbao with courage to exploit more from the investment.