There’s only one story to start with this week, with the pod running the rule over Wu Lei’s move to La Liga – despite concerns over the step up in level, Wu’s injury and adapting to a new country, the panel are broadly positive about the move. We run through the footballing benefit for both the club and player, and hopes that Wu can prove a long-term success to give Chinese football’s reputation a welcome shot in the arm both at home and internationally.
We then take the time to look back over China’s Asian cup exit and the campaign as a whole – while few predicted anything but an Iran win, did China make things too easy? The campaign overall gets something of a par score from the panel, which is indicative of Lippi’s time as a whole. With a lack of younger alternatives coming through, will things get worse before they get better for the national side – and how would we like to see the CFA go about setting expectations, managing long-term development, and getting the right manager in place? There are deeper-rooted issues than the choice of a coach, and the pod finds it hard to be too optimistic about the next World Cup cycle.
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