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Tongji University opens research institute for football

By Wang Lin (Global Times)

08:23, July 19, 2012

Tongji University has opened China's first university-based research institution devoted to football in an effort to build up the country's talent in the sport.

Despite a series of bribery and match fixing scandals that have plagued Chinese football leagues, the sport itself remains the most popular in the country, according to a survey by Taylor Nelson Sofres, a global market research company based in London.

"We really want to do something for football in China," said You Songhui, the head of Tongji University's Physical Education Department. "We will have courses and studies designed to improve China's football market."

The Football Research Center, which the university inaugurated Tuesday, aims to cultivate professional football talent and promote campus football matches, according to the news release from the university. The center will study many aspects of the sport, including football club operations, player injuries and the cultivation of club managers.

For example, You pointed out that many Chinese football clubs lack scientific methods to evaluate player trades. "Some clubs make trades based on instinct. They lack an objective evaluation system," You told the Global Times.

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