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Nepotism FC

A Chinese businessman bought a second-division soccer club, demanded they play his son and, well, we think you can see what the problem is

May 19, 2021

No matter where you go in the world, nepotism looks the same: Someone in way over their head not pulling their weight all because they happened to know someone up the food chain. Here in the states, we call that “having connections.” In the England, the Royal Family. But it’s really the same everywhere, including in the second division of Chinese soccer, where this past weekend a Chinese businessman, drunk with power after the purchase of club Zibo Cuju, demanded they sub in his son late in the second half with the scored tied.

This is his son.

We’re not here to shame anyone for their weight. That’s bush league. But you can probably see why this would be a problem within the context of a professional soccer game. If not, perhaps the highlights will help to clear things up.

It’s one thing to be a boy prince who works hard when handed the opportunities earned simply by the happenstance of birth. It’s another thing entirely to come into the game, stand dead still, give the ball away in midfield five times, boot a couple free kicks straight out to touch, and still have the gall to bark out directions to your teammates and throw your arms up in the air when they don’t get on the end of a pass you left five yards short. That is not going to earn you to many allies in the ol’ locker room, let us tell you that much.

The moral of this extremely Ted Lasso story? No matter how hard you work, you’ll never beat the boss’s kid, so don’t try. Set your own goals, don’t look at the company org chart, and when the heir to daddy's throne wants to stand over the 35-yard free kick like Ronaldo, get the hell out of the way and let them punt it into row Z. Do all that, and you’ll be subbing your own spoiled brat on in no time.