CHINA have banned footballers from getting tattoos and told national team players who have been inked to remove or cover them up to set a 'good example for society'.
A growing number of high-profile Chinese players have been sporting tattoos, including international defender Zhang Linpeng.
He has previously been told to cover up while appearing for both the national team and club side Guangzhou FC.
The General Administration of Sport of China (GAS) published a statement titled, 'Suggestions for strengthening the management of football players'.
It stated that the Chinese Football Association would set out disciplinary requirements for national team players.
"National teams at all levels will strictly implement the relevant requirements of the management measures … (and) fully demonstrate the positive spirit of Chinese football players and set a good example for society," it said.
"The national team and the U23 national team athletes are strictly prohibited from having new tattoos, and those who already have tattoos are advised to remove them themselves.
"If there are special circumstances agreed by the team, [players] must cover up the tattoos during training and matches."
Most read in Football
THEY TOOT… THEY SCORE
Football thugs high on cocaine fuelling surge in violence at stadiums
THEY TOOT… THEY SCORE
Champions League winner is totally unrecognisable 23-years after winning trophy
Spanish newspaper jokes that Ronaldo has 'offered himself to Barcelona'
David Beckham in line for knighthood after having finances cleared by taxman
JOIN SUN VEGAS: GET A FREE £10 BONUS WITH 100s OF GAMES TO PLAY AND NO DEPOSIT REQUIRED (Ts&Cs apply)
It also said that for teams at Under 20 level and below the recruitment of players with tattoos was 'strictly prohibited'.
The GAS added that national teams should organise 'ideological and political education activities' that would 'strengthen the patriotic education' of players.
Doing so would 'enhance the sense of mission, responsibility and honour, and create a national team capable of conquering and fighting well and with excellent style of play', it added.
China's national team have failed to qualify for the World Cup finals since making their debut appearance in 2002 and look set to miss out on Qatar 2022.
⚽ Read our Transfer News Live blog for the very latest rumours, gossip and done deals
Source: Read Full Article