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Coach Guus Hiddink fails to survive Chinese soccer

Posted September. 21, 2019 07:29,   

Updated September. 21, 2019 07:29


Coach Guus Hiddink’s new challenge in the Chinese soccer stage has ended up in failure. “The Chinese Football Association dismissed Guus Hiddink as its Olympic team (under age 22) coach, and appointed Hao Wei, the country’s former female team coach, to the post,” China’s Xinhua News Agency reported on Friday.

Hiddink is the globally famed coach who enabled Team South Korea to the semifinals in the World Cup Korea-Japan in 2002, before coaching the national teams of Australia, Russia, and the Netherlands. In September last year, he was named the head coach of the Chinese Olympic team, which aims to advance to the finals of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. “We believe that coach Hiddink will accelerate the development of Chinese soccer,” the Chinese Football Association said at the time when it signed a three-year contract with the Dutchman. He was reportedly paid 4 million euros (4.417 million US dollars) in annual salary.

However, Hiddink had to prematurely end his contract due to conflict with the Chinese Football Association and poor performance of the team under his leadership. “Coach Hiddink’s preparations for the qualifying round for the Olympics were not efficient,” CFA said. According to Chinese media outlets, the association raised issue with coach Hiddink’s negligence in discovering promising players in the Chinese Super League and recruiting them for the Olympic team. .

The team’s lackluster performance only added to the woes. The team had one win and three losses in the Toulon Cup, which took place in Brazil in June. The team also lost 0-2 to the Vietnamese U-22 team, which was coached by coach Park Hang-seo from South Korea, in an exhibition match at its home turf on September 8.

Yun-Cheol Jeong trigger@donga.com