Connect with us

Chinese Super League

CSL 2012 kicks off March 10 with explosive Yangtze Delta Derby

The most eagerly anticipated Chinese Super League season ever will open with a bang on March 10 with an local derby between Shanghai Shenhua and Nanjing-based Jiangsu Sainty.

Games involving the Yangzte Delta-based clubs, Shenhua, Sainty and Hangzhou Greentown have been amongst the Chinese Super League’s most eye-catching in recent years. Stunning late goals and after match fisticuffs between rival fans have the order of the day in these eagerly anticipated local clashes.

Elsewhere on the opening day fixture list, Guangzhou Evergrande begin the defence of their 2011 crown against Nanchang at home, whilst Beijing host newly promoted Guangzhou Fuli. Shandong raise the curtain on their 2012 season with a home clash against Guizhou Renhe – the team formerly known as Shaanxi Chanba and based in Xi’an last season.

The March 10 start marks the earliest start of a Chinese league season for five years. Being a huge country which spans wildly contrasting climate zones, league bosses have a hard time scheduling games so that teams in northern China don’t start their season in Arctic conditions. Average lows in Changchun, Jilin province, the location of the Chinese Super League’s most northerly club, are around -7c in March. In 2007 when the league started on March 3, the club played its first three matches of the season on the road.

The early start date also augers well for what is sure to be an exciting 2012 in Chinese domestic football. In previous years , Chinese Super League seasons have often began in somewhat shambolic circumstances, with fixture lists not announced until just a fortnight before the action kicks off, the start of the season being delayed because sponsors had yet to be found, and other such basic oversights. This year, with big-spending Guangzhou winning the title last year and the Anelka factor revitalizing interest in the league, the authorities appear to be on the ball and the full fixture list should be confirmed very soon.

The full opening day fixture card is as follows:

Guangzhou Evergrande v Nanchang Hengyuan

Beijing Guoan v Guangzhou Fuli

Liaoning Whowin v Henan Construction

Shanghai Shenhua v Jiangsu Sainty

Shandong Luneng v Guizhou Renhe

Hangzhou Greentown v Qingdao

Dalian Shide v Qingdao Jonoon

Tianjin Teda v Dalian Aerbin

A leading international commentator on Chinese football frequently quoted by the world's top media. Offers piercing and resolutely honest insights into the bustling crossroads where football, society, economics and politics meet in contemporary China. Based in Shanghai since 2005, observer of the Chinese game since 2000.



You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Chinese Super League Table, Results and Fixtures

Latest soccer scores info. Football results, table & fixtures being loaded.

More in Chinese Super League