A soccer team in China forfeited a match because ‘hair not black enough’
There are various reasons a soccer team loses a match, but the color of its players’ hair is certainly a new one.  A women’s soccer team in China was banned by officials from taking the field because their players’ hair was “not black enough.”  The team from Fuzhou University was scheduled to play Jimei University in the south-eastern province of Fujian as part of a two-week tournament, but was told by officials beforehand it was in breach of the rules that ban jewelry, “strange hairstyles” and dyed hair. Coaches tried frantically to rectify the issue before kick-off, acquiring black hair dye from nearby salons, but some of the players’ hair was deemed “not black enough.” “In reality, it’s
Death of ‘soccer god’ sparks nostalgia among Chinese fans
When Diego Maradona died on Wednesday, it was a moment of nostalgia for many soccer fans in China, who were reminded of childhood memories of watching the World Cup with their parents. Maradona is often mentioned as the greatest soccer player in the history of the sport. While he retired from professional-level soccer in 1997, millennials remember watching him as kids, when he played for the Argentinian national team in the 1980s and 1990s.  “When I was younger, most of my memories with my dad were sitting there watching football while my dad talked about the miraculous plays by Maradona,” a 24-year-old woman from northeastern China’s Jinlin, who wanted to be identified by her surname
No deal and no name as German soccer counts the cost of China backlash
A German soccer club and one of the country’s star players are feeling the heat from China.  News emerged over the weekend that Bundesliga side Cologne lost a deal with a Chinese gambling sponsor. Meanwhile, state-controlled Chinese media are still blacklisting Arsenal star and former German international player Mesut Özil. According to Cologne newspaper Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger, the loss for the postponed deal was about $1.66 million.  The club did not offer comment but confirmed that the sponsors from China had withdrawn the potential deal, reported Deutsche Welle online. Cologne made headlines last month when they chose to postpone a joint academy with the Chinese soccer club Liaoning.  The
‘There are values higher than money’: German soccer club scraps China deal
German soccer club FC Cologne has pulled out of a $2 million deal to run a football academy in northeast China, as a member of the club council said they should not support “such a totalitarian and brutal dictatorship.” Cologne’s president, Werner Wolf, told the local paper Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger on Wednesday that the Bundesliga club had decided not to proceed with the project. Stefan Müller-Römer, a member of the club council, told the paper: “I understand that the Federal Republic of Germany cannot get past the economic power of China completely and so there is an exchange. But we don’t need China in sports.” He also said that human rights in China were being massively disregarded and a su