【今今今期新版跑狗图_今今今期新版跑狗图官网】English sports promoter Barry Hearn urges patient pursuit of China's football dream
By sportswriter Wang Zijiang
LONDON, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Barry Hearn, one of Britain's top sports promoters, is speaking out about China's tendancy to hire foreign football talent, warning that the country should not waste money on "established foreign players" but rather demonstrate the patience necessary to create homegrown superstars.
"Don't grow too quickly," said the 70-year-old in an interview with Xinhua. "Don't rush. You are rushing. When you rush, you creat a market that is artificial. You created a market where you haven't served the grassroots."
The 70-year-old has revolutionized snooker and darts in the past decade, turning these two small and pub-centric events into "huge" sports. His Matchroom company boasted 800 event days last year across 12 sports.
He also has football chops. He served as chairman of east London's Leyton Orient football club for 19 years, from 1995 to 2014. The Scottish Football Association invited him to give a lecture a few years ago that was met with widespread acclaim.
He also has experience in promoting sports in China, exploring the potential of the world's most attrative market in snooker, which has produced world-famous stars like former world number one Ding Junhui and former English Open champion Liang Wenbo.
"Don't forget that it took me 34 years to make snooker a big game in China," he said.
Twelve months ago, Chinese Super League clubs spent vast fortunes snapping up superstar players and coaches including Carlos Tevez, Oscar, Jackson Martinez, Luiz Felipe Scolari, Felix Magath, Andre Villas-boas, Manuel Pellegrini and Fabio Cannavaro, who used to grace the the most famous stadiums of the "Big Five" leagues.
Hearn said that it was a chaotic period of time, and that the Chinese government was correct to slam the breaks on the purchase frenzy.
"12 months ago, it was crazy," he said. "Huge money was thrown at old players. They wasted a lot of money. I think the government has realized that enough is enough. So it is now controlled, which is good.
"The most important thing is to serve the grassroots, not just buy the superstars. You need to creat the fabric of sport - people actually playing. Then they will love the game. Then you can develop it to significant levels.
"You mustn't run before you could walk. And walking is educating, establishing rassroots and community participation. That is the secret. When snooker was growing, we make snooker as part of the education system, put snooker tables at schools and give everyone opportunities to play. Then the game took off."
Xinhua asked him what he would do if the Chinese government invited him to come and help boost its football development.
"What I do is that in China, I will set up separate football academies in each province, servicing the community. I will make sure that there is some financial control to limit of amount of money they spend controlled by the government.
"So there are some very wealthy people in China that want instant success. They may come back to haunt you. The big success you need is not buy players from overseas, but creat you own superstars. But that takes time. If you just buy a talent that is already established, it does not develop the sport itself. It just entertains us, which is good. You need a banlance," he stressed.
"You must never forget that we in sport give opportunity to people, to change their lives, to educate us. We must creat China its own superstars. So that should be amount of money if you like football with a national plan on amateur and unprofessionals under the control of sensible people," Hearn concluded.