Connect with us


Making Moves:Expat Footballers in China

 has been following the grassroots movement, included are those from the growing international community in China. With the increasing population of non-Chinese living in mainland China (fast approaching one million) the demand for regular football competition is rising. Here’s a look at some of the clubs and events who are keeping ahead of the trend.

The fierce competition of internationals impressed local Chinese. Amateur players can also entertain and inspire.

China Nations Cup-Hangzhou November 12-13 2011

November in Hangzhou does not offer much better weather than last weekend (November 12-13, 2011), where the China Nations Cup kicked off in its inaugural, groundbreaking year. The event hosted four football teams, representing France, Korea, Africa, and China, competing for honors of the tournament, dubbed the ‘Expat World Cup” of China. After six fierce matches over two days there were three teams tied with six points, therefore Africa crowned as champions due to goal difference. China and Africa pose together after a well contested match that saw Africa crowned as champions.

The Subway and Vitamin Water sponsored event supported the slogan of the event, international sportsmanship first, local competition second. The sporting event, organized by Hangzhou Sinobal Football Club, will continue the tournament’s legacy in future years, especially after the competition’s success in 2011.

The first international grassroots football event of its kind in China was a great success for players, fans, and the organizer Sinobal FC. Hangzhou, the host city, was proud to celebrate the international and sportive environment and looks forward to the 2012 tournament and with the support of sponsors like Subway,

Africa celebrate as 2011 China Nations Cup Champions

Vitamin Water, and Calle Underground next year (fall 2012) tournament will hopefully be bigger and better.  With the event established, the growing international community, and its football players, of China have something new to look forward to in the coming years.




NIFT -Nanjing International Football Tournament

The one day tournament in Nanjing saw ten teams compete for a prize. The local team “Talking” saw off efforts from visiting teams of Suzhou (semi-final PK’s) and Hangzhou (2-1 final).  The event was a large success, gathering a festive group of international players and spectators. Sponsored by local bar Jimmy’s and restaurant Mr. Kartoffel the biannual sporting event expects to expand in future years. Organizers Nanjing Football Club are making progress in the field of grassroots.

Trevor has always been a student of the game, thus becoming a teacher and ambassador for the sport was only natural. In 2010 he joined Sinobal Football Club in Hangzhou, Zhejiang, a grassroots football club founded in 1998. First starting as a player, then as a youth and first team assistant coach, now Trevor spends most of the time coordinating international projects with the club. These include school football co-op projects, China Grassroots Football Foundation in rural areas of China, Street Football, China Grassroots Football exhibition, and finding new opportunities/events to popularize, enhance, and project grassroots football in China. For WEF Trevor contributes primarily on happenings away from the CSL, where, arguably, Chinese football needs the most development. Although coverage on Hangzhou Greetown FC, a partner of Sinobal FC,is to be expected. If you are interested in contacting Trevor or finding out more about grassroots football in China contact

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

More in Grassroots