Thirteen Chinese Super League clubs face ban over debt and unpaid salaries

Thirteen Chinese Super League clubs have been told to clear debts or face a ban from the competition next season.

The Chinese Football Association (CFA) wrote to all but three of the country’s 16 top-flight clubs, as well as five lower-league teams.

The CFA claimed the clubs had outstanding debts on player transfers, salaries or bonuses.

Many of the teams deny the claims, including Shanghai SIPG, who paid £60m for Brazil midfielder Oscar in January.

The CFA’s letter follows a similar move by the Asian Football Confederation, which wrote to the CFA on 11 July stating that clubs had until 31 August to clear all outstanding payments or face exclusion from next year’s Asian Champions League.

Guangzhou Evergrande, two-time winners of the Asian Champions League, were among the clubs contacted, the CFA said.

In a statement on social media, Shanghai SIPG said they had “fully paid all of the arrears last October” and had “submitted its evidence to the CFA”.

Jiangsu Suning, Shandong Luneng and Beijing Guoan issued similar statements while Shanghai Shenhua, who signed Carlos Tevez for a reported £40m in December, said they were investigating and would finalise outstanding payments as soon as possible.

Chinese football authorities have sought to crack down on spending, with new regulations put in place that mean loss-making clubs are hit with a 100% tax on signing players from overseas,effectively doubling transfer fees.

The CFA has also reduced the number of overseas playerspermitted in matchday squads.

Oscar sparks a 50-man brawl in China

Former Chelsea player Oscar sparked a 50-man brawl during a Chinese Super League match on Sunday afternoon.

The incident came in first-half injury time during Guangzhou R&F’s 1-1 draw with Shanghai SIPG, shortly after Hulk had equalised for the away side, who are managed by former Tottenham and Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas.

Oscar became agitated and appeared to deliberately lash the ball at two opposition players before being pushed to the ground.

That prompted a brawl involving all 22 players, both sets of substitutes and several members of staff on the pitch.

The referee ended up sending one player off from each side – Tixiang Li of Guangzhou and Huan Fu of Shanghai with neither happy with the decision.

It was the second controversy of the game involving Oscar, who set up Hulk’s goal, but was marginally offside.

And the game, which started in heavy rain, will also be remembered for a howler from Shanghai goalkeeper Junling Yan for the opening goal.

However, it’s the brawl which will make headlines – and you can see it in the video at the top of the page.