China’s sports commission announced on Friday that two prominent football officials are under investigation for “severe violations of the law” as a government crackdown on the sport deepened.
According to claims made by the General Administration of Sport, those under investigation include Wang Xiaoping, the chairman of the Chinese Football Association’s disciplinary committee, and Huang Song, the director of the competition division.
They are the most recent in a long line of prominent football officials who have been the subject of inquiries since November, including CFA President Chen Xuyuan and former national coach and Premier League player Li Tie.
When the investigations were announced in each case, no additional information regarding the suspected offenses was provided, but the phrase is frequently employed by Chinese official bodies as a code word indicating corruption.
Self-described football enthusiast, Chinese President Xi Jinping, has expressed his desire for his nation to one day host and even win the World Cup.
Nevertheless, in recent months, his anti-graft campaign has swept the country, hitting an industry already reeling from the effects of the zero-Covid policy and financial difficulties.
According to Caixin, a financial news outlet, the crackdown has also captured “several” professional players in the two highest levels of the Chinese league.
One of the players is Jin Jingdao, a Chinese international who is presently playing for Shandong Taishan FC in the Chinese Premier League, according to the report.