Despite keeping things close against the league’s top side for most of the match, Shanghai Shenxin ultimately met their fate in the form of a 3-0 defeat to Guangzhou Evergrande. After the match, Shenxin decided it was time to fire their manager, Zhu Jiong.
Zhu was co-longest serving manager at a CSL club, an honor he shared with Liaoning’s Ma Lin. The two managers’ sides came up to the CSL in 2010, but they’ve been on a very different trajectory since then. Shenxin (then located in Nanchang), just barely avoided relegation in 2010 and 2011, then after a move to Shanghai in 2012 that was supposed to rejuvinate the club, they finally met their fate. Or so it seemed, the dissolving of Dalian Shide meant Shenxin would get another chance.
This season, despite sitting in 13th place, relegation isn’t a serious threat as they are only three points away from being in the top half of the table. Zhu’s record is less than stellar, at 26-29-51 during his time in the CSL, but his sides were always lacking in top talent, doing a lot with a little. In midweek, the club hired Guo Guangqi, who had previous experience in Chengdu and Guangdong Sunray Cave, to serve in their front office, a move that now appears to have spelled the beginning of the end for Zhu.
With Shenhua currently looking for a manager, one wonders if they’ll turn to the Shanghainese Zhu, a former Shenhua player, to bust up the current hold Beijingers have in Shanghai (East Asia’s Gao Hongbo and Shenhua’s interim manager Shen Xiangfu). Despite his lackluster record at Shenxin, many feel the dynamic, young manager has a strong future ahead of him if he’s with the right side.