China and the Chinese Super League have made no secret that they want to be a world soccer superpower as soon as possible.

They have tried to do that by spending outrageous amounts of money on semi-notable Premier League and Brazilian players, as well as making Argentinian Carlos Tevez the highest paid soccer player in the world. Now, some of that money may be going to the top referees in the world in hopes of convincing them to go to China.

The Mirror reports that the Chinese Super League is trying to get Premier League referee and Ed Sheeran super fan Mark Clattenburg to ref in China.

Clattenburg is regarded as one of the best referees in the world and has reffed in this years FA Cup, Champions League and Euro Finals. But it still seems strange for a referee to be getting paid big bucks considering most are part time and their pay would suggest they surely aren’t doing this as a career.

That’s because China is motivated to bring on Clattenburg due to repeated attempts at match fixing and corruption throughout Chinese soccer. Clattenburg and his experience reffing in the Premier League as well as UEFA and FIFA tournaments would bring a sense of legitimacy for a league looking for legitimacy on the world stage.

[Mirror]

About Phillip Bupp

News and soccer editor for The Comeback and I occasionally write for Awful Announcing and Freezing Cold Takes. I also do video highlight game coverage for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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