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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Opinion -> 
Letters From Readers
    2015-09-07  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

    ON Thursday, China’s national soccer team was unlucky to draw 0-0 with Hong Kong in a dominant performance at Bao’an Stadium in front of 26,173 people. Many of my former colleagues and students were in the crowd to cheer on the Chinese national team in a result that would have catapulted them to the top of Group C after just two games, but the draw sees them in 3rd place behind both Hong Kong and Qatar.

    However, the result is not the point of my article.

    The point of my article is that I was stuck at home watching the match on television like thousands of other foreigners across this city that we now call home. Why were we watching it at home or in bars across the city? The reason is because the decision had been made that no foreign passport holders were permitted to buy tickets for the match.

    Now this was a dramatic change from the original proposal. On Aug. 11, it was stated in a press release that one ticket would be sold per ID card or passport. However, when the tickets were made available on Aug. 18, the situation appeared to have changed without informing anyone. My Chinese girlfriend was able to purchase a ticket for herself, but she could not purchase a ticket for me. Other foreign friends of mine even went to the ticket booth at the Shenzhen Concert Hall and found that even in person, they were not permitted to buy tickets to the game, and, therefore, were not able to attend the match.

    This was an outrageous decision by someone. Soccer in China is desperate for acceptance from a wider audience. Shenzhen FC, from what I understand, is struggling to attract more than 12,000 people to a game and does NO advertising to attract the hundreds of thousands of expats that would watch the game before streaming into bars across the city to watch the English Premier League or their favorite league from elsewhere across the globe.

    Why is the city of Shenzhen or the Chinese Football Association trying to exclude foreigners from World Cup Qualifiers? Are they afraid that we would cheer for Hong Kong? Do they think that we would “cause trouble”? Are all foreigners going to be banned from World Cup Qualifiers across China for the remainder of the campaign?

    I think this was a poor decision and every expat soccer fan deserves an explanation.  

    Chris Edwards via email

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