China scores in Latin America

Financial Times LatAm Viva - June 15, 2018

Although China is not a football superpower, the beautiful game is known to be President Xi Jinping’s favourite sport. Indeed, the central government has set out targets for the national team to become Asia’s best by 2030, and to win a World Cup by 2050, according to Novam Portam, a Sino-Latin consultancy. To foster that rise, Beijing has spent lavishly on foreign football players, especially Latin American stars. In 2012, Chinese clubs spent $51m on transfers. By 2016, that spending has rocketed to $451m.