This case examines dilemmas evolving in China’s premier soccer league, the Chinese Super League. A plan is suggested for confronting the league’s challenges, with recommendations that focus on creating a harmonious and competitive league. Challenges arise from the political and economic transformation currently taking place in China, affecting league operations. While the league stands at a precipice of change on the eve of the Beijing Olympic Games, its viability as a going concern is uncertain. Part of the uncertainty derives from an unregulated system of league policies that have been poorly communicated and unenforced, resulting in discord. Development of league regulations and communication protocols remains largely government driven and would be best if consistent with the local culture, but commercial issues of league operations are also important. Enhancing the effectiveness and consistency of culture-sensitive communication protocols—especially between the government, media, and league officials—will increase participation from league stakeholders.
Huang is with the Dept. of Sport Journalism, Shanghai University of Sport, Shanghai 200438, People’s Republic of China, firstname.lastname@example.org. Brewer is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405.