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#1
Evergrande players celebrate after scoring during their CSL final round game against Luneng on November 2 in Ji'nan. Photo: CFP
When Guangzhou Evergrande captain Zheng Zhi lifted the Chinese Super League (CSL)trophy last week cheap adidas nmd high tops sale , it's likely he had already shaken off the disappointment of his team's failure to defend the Asian Champions League (ACL) title.

Back in May when his team was drawn against the Western Sydney Wanderers of Australia, the 34-year-old was seen trying his best not to smile on the stage.

Of course, the Asian Player of the Year 2013 had a reason to be happy. For the defending champions, the draw against the ACL debutants Wanderers was an easy one. Every team in Asia were worried about Evergrande's foreign scoring prowess.

But as time goes by, things have turned out differently. Italian duo Alessandro Diamanti and Alberto Gilardino, bought in to replace departed Argentine Dario Conca and Brazilian Muriqui cheap adidas nmd high tops , failed to team up well with their teammates. Evergrande then crashed out of the ACL.

Though Brazilian Elkeson set a new record for the highest number of goals in one single Chinese season, one-man shows are obviously not enough for Guangzhou.

After Fabio Cannavaro took over the coaching job at Evergrande last week, the club management also noted it would take control of the transfer negotiating rights from Marcello Lippi's son Davide, the man behind the Italian attackers' signing.

Not surprisingly, foreigners dominated the scoring list again this season.

The first Chinese name in the Chinese Super League scoring list is Wu Lei of Shanghai East Asia, who sits in eighth place with 12 goals.

After Evergrande's sensational 2013 season cheap adidas nmd city sock sale , clubs from the CSL started to field more foreign powers up front, even though bringing them to China wasn't cheap.

Shandong Luneng topped the transfer spending at the start of the season with a reported 177 million yuan ($28.89 million). However, their early elimination from the ACL dealt a devastating blow to their aspirations.

Sitting fourth in the league table, Luneng's result under Brazilian coach Cuca, apparently failed to meet the high rollers' expectations.

Their only remaining chance of joining next year's continental games would be winning the Chinese FA Cup, where they already hold a 4-2 advantage before going into the away leg of the FA Cup finals against Jiangsu Sainty.

The Ji'nan-based club has a nationwide reputation for its excellent youth training facilities cheap adidas nmd city sock , but in August, they fell well short of what they knew they could achieve.

The Chinese national Olympic team crashed out at the round of 16 to Thailand during the Asian Games, which prompted many fans to castigate Chinese national sides' constant underachieving this decade.

But one thing that didn't draw too much attention is the fact that Luneng had recalled six of their players, including 2014 Young Player of the Year Liu Binbin, back to the club during the Olympic team's preparation session.

The other two teams that participated in the ACL also suffered major upsets. Beijing Guoan and Guizhou Renhe were both knocked out in the group stages.

Unsustainable development

The current financial management of most CSL clubs is still "unsustainable," stated a report on the business value of CSL cheap adidas nmd chukka suede sale , put forward by 163 and marketing company Total Sports.

Evergrande, Luneng, Guangzhou R&F, Shanghai Greenland, Guizhou Renhe, Beijing Guoan and Shanghai East Asia have incomes reaching 100 million yuan ($16.3 million).

But some of those sides chose to deplete their incomes with huge expenditures on transfers and salaries cheap adidas nmd chukka suede , meaning the league only has five clubs that made a profit in the 2014 season: Evergrande, Renhe, East Asia, Shanghai Shenxin and R&F.

Apart from R&F, they all saw a certain slump in the season.

Former England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson led R&F forward from last year's sixth place to third, the club's best-ever result. But now the Swede www.facecapas.com , who has already left R&F on a mutual termination of contract, is likely to join East Asia next season.

Founded by China's soccer great Xu Genbao in 2005, East Asia have always had high hopes since being promoted to the top flight last year.

But their second year in the CSL didn't result in a major step forward. Xu then sold the club - which he had cultivated for more than a decade since establishing Genbao Football Base in 2001, the major player source of East Asia - to the sponsor Shanghai International Port Group in its entirety.

Relegation battle

Shao Jiayi's free kick winner when Guoan visited Evergrande in the penultimate round was considered a boost to their league title contention hopes, as it pulled the runaway Evergrande back into the fray, but the fight against relegation was also a focus of attention.

CSL debutants Harbin Yiteng had been dealing with a grueling schedule since the start of the season - seven consecutive league games on the road.

Their struggling season was highlighted by the time they grabbed their first league point cheap adidas nmd sale , which came after conceding eight straight defeats.

Yiteng's unlucky season was followed by their neighbors. At the halfway point of the season, four of the bottom five in the CSL table were from Northeast China.

Those clubs became the major part of the battle against relegation. Eventually, Yiteng would be accompanied into relegation by Dalian Aerbin.

Aerbin were at one point embroiled in a back pay crisis in the middle of the season, when they had to sell their stars in order to become financially "stable."

Dalian, a city once known for its soccer, will now have no team to cheer for in China's top flight. The city has offered many notable soccer stars in the past cheap adidas nmd shoes , such as Hao Haidong, Sun Jihai, Li Ming and Zhang Enhua.

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