Why is China not good at football? (Analyzed!)

Last Updated on April 17, 2022 by

The major reasons behind the poor development and performance of the Chinese football team is a lack of deep footballing culture or tradition and a failure to invest in grassroots. In order not to be gender-biased, the female National team in China is doing relatively well and has recorded tremendous growth over the years. From a footballing perspective, soccer requires a long time of investment and planning and it might take a few generations to achieve the desired improvement and success. However, the corrupted and centralized system of government in China has turned a blind eye to tThe production of infrastructural facilities is essentially needed for the growth and development of Chinese football. This and other factors have ultimately proved to be a hindrance to China becoming a global force in the football world.

Aside from the lack of grassroots participation and cultural reasons, there are several other factors to consider as one the reasons for the underperformance of the Chinese national football team, particularly the male team. In this article, We will take you through a detailed look into the major cause of laxity in the performance of China’s national team in fofootball.

Why is china not good at football?

china not good at football

China is regarded widely as the most populated country in the world and is renowned for its ever-growing population and economy. In general terms, they are aactively involved in a series of sports games but their national football team, particularly the men’s team has been below par for several decades. It has become a subject of interest why a country of its size and magnitude is behind minnows like Montenegro and Cape Verde in FIFA rankings. Realistically, football was never in the Chinese people’s DNA as they are relatively performing well in other sporting activities aside from football. In addition to that, China tends to thrive more in technical sports rather than the physical nature of the soccer game.

What are the reasons behind the lack of development in the Chinese men’s national team?

Lack of growth in Chinese football national teams occurs due to several reasons which will be highlighted and discussed below.


China as a nation is not culturally inclined to play the soccer game. Although football is quite popular among the youths in China, the game Is constantly in competition with other sports like ping pong, basketball, gymnastics, and athletics which are less physical than football. These sports are coccconsidered to be a more traditional sport than soccer and it’s easier to play technically wise.


As a largely populated country, China is a hugely competitive place and most people want their children to have a regular job as a means of survival. This puts grassroots development at great risk as parents football as a career opportunity. In addition to this, the pay for local players is not encouraging which makes the dream of becoming a global superstar virtually nonexistent in the minds of an average young Chinese person.


Another major reason behind the limited growth in China football is the lack of infrastructural development. Well-built stadiums and modern training facilities are lacking to encourage the grassroots and ultimately a healthy soccer market.


Having enjoyed a successful period and increased popularity after the first Chinese professional league was set up in 1994, the league took a step backward in the year  2000. The setback was due to a lack of investment which was associated with illegal gambling syndicates. These corrupt practices had a negative effect on the progress the league has maintained through the years as investors pulled out of the team’s sponsorships. As a result, teams couldn’t sustainably afford to nurture special talents to secure the future of the Chinese national teams and also contribute to grassroots development.


Football superstars are role models and inspirations for yoyoung players in the game. Their presence is enough reason to motivate grassroots players and arouse their dedication to the game. However, China lacks such personality in its ranks, particularly in the men’s football team.



Football requires consistent investment from generation to generation and to develop talents for the future, individualism, creativity, and patience must be embraced. However, China is lacking in that regard it has had a telling impact on the men’s football performances on the national level.

What other sports are the Chinese good at?

 In general terms, China is relatively good at sporting events that require technicality probably due to their physical disaadvantage. They consistently perform relatively well in sports like ping pong, judo, taekwondo, tennis, badminton, and of course basketball is where they are ably represented globally by the retired famous basketball superstar Yao Ming.


We have a compiled list of frequently asked questions on why china is not good at soccer games. Let’s check them out!

Why does china not participating in the world cup?

World cup qualification is achieved after successfully passing through the qualifying stages. China was not baneed from the world cup but failed in its qualifying attempts after making its maiden appearance in 2002 cohosted by Korea and Japan.

Is football popular in China?

Yes! Football is a popular game across the globe and China are no different. The FIFA World cup is up on the list of the top 5 sporting events in China.

What sport is china well known for?

Ranging from gymnastics to athletics, China is also renowned for its utter dominance in Badminton and table tennis.

How successful is the Chinese female national team in football? 

In terms of competitiveness, the female national team in Chinese football has been relatively more successful than their male counterparts. They have been consistent in performance for several decades, and have been on the same par with international giants like the USA, Germany, and Japanese female national teams.


The culture and bureaucratic system of government are major factors affecting the growth of the Chinese football teams. However, the female team has relatively been better than their male counterparts nonetheless. Furthermore, China performs better in other technique-based sports than the explosive later of football, which they are not built for physically.

We have come to the very end of this informative article with the hope that enough resources have been provided in this write-up to answer all your queries about the article topic. Kindly reach out to us via that comment section if you have more questions.


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