Spare a thought for fans of China’s Under-20 side next season.
They’re facing one hell of an away trip every week, with the Chinese Under-20 side set to compete in the fourth division of German football, according to Bild.
Let’s say they’re playing Freiburg’s reserves, who’ll also be playing in the Regionalliga Sudwest.
That’s a round trip of around 16,000km. Imagine losing to a scrappy goal in the 94th minute and having to trek it back to Beijing.
But there is method to the madness.
China’s Under-20 side will be entered into the Regionalliga Sudwest in an effort to build a side capable of winning the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
How will it work?
There are currently 19 teams taking part in the Regionalliga Sudwest every season.
The idea would be, rather than one team having an off-week twice a season, they’d play China’s Under-20 side instead.
They wouldn’t necessarily be an official part of the league but would still be competing against a team from the German fourth division every week.
It’s so crazy, it might just work.
We look forward to seeing a Chinese Under-20 side take on Morecambe and Yeovil Town in a couple of years.