The Chinese Football Association’s disciplinary committee has decided to relegate Guangzhou GPC and Chengdu Blades to the second division after club officials were found guilty of match fixing and gambling. Both clubs have the right to appeal.
Chengdu is owned by Sheffield United, hence the blades connection, and has strong ties with the Central Coast Mariners. These allegations are bound to embarrass both clubs.
Former Sydney FC player Brendan Santalab is a Chengdu Blades player, but has not been implicated in the probe that has seen more than 20 officials arrested or detained in recent months including the Chinese Football Association’s former President.