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Foreign players in Chinese Super League teams could be reduced - reports

Oscar celebrates SIPG goal v Western Sydney
Oscar is one of several high-profile foreign players in the Chinese Super League.

Chinese football authorities are considering making further changes to the rules governing the number of foreign players clubs in the Chinese Super League can sign for next season.

Following regulations controversially introduced on the eve of the current season, clubs are permitted to field three non-Chinese players per game and have five in their squad, but a new proposal would see the number allowed in each squad reduced to four.

Chinese media reported on Thursday that the Chinese Football Association had sent a letter to clubs regarding the proposal but that no decision had yet been made.

The new regulations would allow clubs to sign up to six foreign players, but two would be permitted to only be registered to play with the reserves.

Amendments to the make-up of a club's foreign contingent would be permitted in the mid-season transfer window, with new signings allowed as well as the re-assignment of players from the reserves to the first team squad. The limit in the senior squad, however, would remain at four.

The proposal comes after the Chinese FA axed the 3+1 rule at the start of the year, which stated teams must field a player from an Asian nation and could name a maximum of three non-Asian foreign players.

It is the latest in a series of attempts by the authorities to more tightly control the game in the country, with the Chinese also imposing a 100 percent tax on foreign signings over $7.5 million as a result of the huge sums being spent by clubs in recent seasons.

Michael Church has written about Asian football for more than 20 years and mainly covers the Chinese game for ESPN FC. Twitter: @michaelrgchurch

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