China start a six day training camp


China have begun their six-day training camp, despite there being no World Cup qualifying matches for the rest of the year, because of COVID-19. 

China not wasting time

There may be no international qualifying matches for the rest of 2020 in Asia, due to the global pandemic caused by COVID-19 spreading around the world. China though is not wasting time. Instead, they have decided to organize a training camp, meaning in theory, they should be ready and raring to go when or if the World Cup qualifiers start again next year.

China really needs to be ready from the off too, because they find themselves in a precarious situation, where they really need to make sure they defeat the Philippines or they could find themselves being knocked out of the World Cup without even making the final qualifying round. 

On top of requiring a win against the Philippines, they also need to make sure they score a hatful of goals when they face Guam and the Maldives, otherwise, they might not be one of the best second-placed runners up, as only the four best second-placed finishers in the second round group stage, will find themselves qualifying for the third round. 

The additional sides who finish second in the group will find themselves eliminated from the World Cup, however, I think they may automatically qualify for the Asian Cup which is an OK consolation prize. We are aware that every country battling it out for those second-place spots would much prefer to be in the World Cup third qualifying round though. 

If China scrapes through to the third stage of Asian World Cup qualifying they still have been a failure somewhat, despite achieving their goal of getting to the next round. That is because China should be at a stage where they can compete better with the likes of Syria, and topping their group, which on paper is a lot easier than others. 

If they fail to qualify for the next round, they will be distinct failures, especially when you add in the number of naturalised players they have added to their squad. China finds themselves stuck on a never-ending cliff-hanger, which currently doesn't really have an end in sight. This is despite the AFC officially saying the matches will go ahead next year, this could all change if countries face bad spikes or second waves over the winter when COVID-19 is expected to make a resurgence. 

If that did happen, it would put international football in Asia next year in jeopardy, just as it has this year, and with the World Cup rolling around in 2022, we really need to get to a point where teams either start qualifying, or the date of the World Cup is adjusted.  

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