Veteran stars like Luis Figo, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Fabio Cannavaro will challenge some of their Shanghai counterparts later this month in the city, when a team comprising former Real Madrid FC players takes on Shanghai Clever FC in a friendly clash.
The Spanish squad features star names like former FIFA World Player Figo, three-time Champions League top scorer van Nistelrooy, former Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro, as well as former Real skippers Fernando Hierro and Fernando Redondo.
Shanghai Clever FC is an amateur football club established in January this year, with former national captain Fan Zhiyi doubling as a player and manager. Former national women’s coach Lin Zhihua is the head coach. The club boasts many senior players born in the 1960s and 70s, including names that are familiar for local fans, like former Shanghai Shenhua players, Xie Hui, Liu Jun, and goalie Yu Weiliang.
The event is part of a series of activities to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the establishment of Sino-Spain diplomatic relations. The match will be held on September 24, with ticket prices ranging from 80 yuan (US$13) to 680 yuan.
The 80-yuan tickets account for 60 percent of those available, while some of the proceeds will be denoted to the Shanghai Sports Charity Foundation for youth soccer development as well as pension for retired players. “The club aims to foster Shanghai’s football culture and history, and make our own contribution for the development of youth soccer,” Fan said.