Friday, October 27, 2006

Shanghai's twin brothers trial with PSV Eindhoven

Twin brothers Sun Xiang and Sun Ji have been given a two-week trial with the Dutch champions PSV Eindhoven. The 24-year-old Shanghai Shenhua midfielders will train with PSV first team from 2 November and will be likely to join the competitions of club's secondary team. The duo had already been invited to trial with PSV earlier this year, but could not reach Holland, because their club was competing in the Chinese Super league. Shanghai Shenhua eventually finished second. Sun Xiang, the younger twin, believed he had an "80 per cent" chance of being picked up by the former European champions.

PSV are no strangers to Asian footballers after former coach Guus Hiddink brought Lee Young-pyo and Park Ji-sung with him from South Korea after the 2002 World Cup. Both have made tremendous progress in their European trip. Park has been a mainstay in English powerhouse Manchester United and Lee made his mark with Tottenham Hotspur.

Wu Jingui, head coach of Shanghai Shenhua, said he welcomed the opportunity for the twins. "Of course it is a great chance for them," he told China Daily. "They are the best players in the team over the seasons, I believe they can show their talent in the Netherlands as long as they stay healthy." Sun Xiang joined a training camp of Premier League's Wigan Athletic last year while his elder brother Sun Ji has yet to gain any overseas experience.

A total of seven Chinese football players are now competing in overseas club. Li Tie and Sun Jihai play in English Premier League with Li in Sheffield United and Sun Jihai for Manchester City. Shao Jiayi is with the Cottbus of Bundesliga, Qu Shengqing and Zhang Yuning joined Australian Super League last year, Shi Jun competes in Swiss League and Dong Fangzhuo is playing with the Belgium Antwerpen.

See also: Bolton Wanderers attracts two Chinese teenagers (12 Oct)

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