Foreign coach sought for 2008 Olympics
By Cruz Fang (
Updated: 2006-04-18 12:56

The Chinese Football Association (CFA) is determined to find themselves a foreign coach for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Chinese General Administration of Sports(GAS), China's top sports governing body, urged the CFA a fortnight ago to prepare a reliable schedule for 2008 and has approved the proposed plan.

According to the plan, a foreign coach will be appointed in mid-May, while interim coach Jia Xiuquan will lead the team in the Toulon Cup starting May 17. Jia is to be replaced after the cup no matter the results of the tournament.

Many well known names have expressed interest in coaching China's Olympic team whose last Games tour dates back to the Seoul Games in 1988. However, due to tight finances, the CFA will not be able to offer a lavish package to potential candidates.

"Most of the candidates come from Europe," said a CFA official. CFA signed a last-minute sponsorship deal early this month and increased its manager's salary to US$500,000 per year.

At a press conference yesterday, the CFA also made a proposal to England Premier League side Chelsea, asking manager Jose Mourinho to watch China's two friendlies against Switzerland and France in May. The Premier League powerhouse has a cooperation deal with the CFA, which was signed last week.

France and Switzerland, both World Cup finalists in Group G with South Korea, expect to acquire some knowledge on their East Asian opponents through playing China.