Chinese FA passes controversial rule change allowing Guangzhou Evergrande extra foreign players

The big-spending Chinese champions appear to be the only immediate winners out of the new rule change, which allows them to have two more foreigners on their squad list
China's Football Association (CFA) Committee has voted to pass a rule change allowing Super League (CSL) clubs to add two more foreign players in their roster on Wednesday however it only applies for teams currently competing in the AFC Champions League (ACL).

Several clubs and officials had pushed for the rule change which would allow teams to sign seven foreign players rather than the previous allocation of five, one of which must come from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).

Wednesday evening's CFA Committee vote was passed after receiving the necessary two-thirds majority with a final 43-16 vote.

However, Guangzhou Evergrande, who strongly pushed for the rule change, will be the only club able to take advantage of the new foreign player allocation, as they are the only Chinese side currently competing in the ACL.

The big-spending Chinese champions Guangzhou, who are currently coached by Marcello Lippi and lead the CSL, are due to take on Al Ittihad in the ACL quarterfinals in September.

China's other 2012 ACL representatives Tianjin Teda and Beijing Guoan crashed out in the group stage.

Clubs will remain limited to four foreigners on the pitch at one time in the CSL, with one needed to be an AFC player. Only five foreigners can be in a matchday squad too.

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