Published on Jul 11, 2012 by AlJazeeraEnglish : Big money and a lack of organisational checks and balances has turned football into a 'dishonourable sport' in China, with scandals reported of bribery, game fixing, and illegal betting. Its reputation was so bad, at one point it has been called 'fake-ball' by many of its fans.
To clean up, the Chinese government prosecuted a large number of high profile personalities over corrupt practices. A few weeks ago, two former football league chiefs, a national team captain, and four players from the only squad to ever make it to the World Cup finals were all jailed for 10 years. China is also bringing in big-time international players to try and restore confidence in the local leagues. Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas reports from Hong Kong.