Chinese President Xi Jinping sat down for talks with FIFA President Gianni Infantino and the soccer’s global governing body’s delegation in Beijing on Wednesday (June 14).
Xi said during the meeting that support from Infantino in the development and reform of soccer in China is a gesture of friendship towards the Chinese people, media reports said.
President Xi has previously expressed desire to see his country qualify for, host and win the World Cup, helping mount speculation that China will make a move to organise the tournament in 2030 or 2034. Chinese authorities have declined to say whether a decision on a bid has been made.
Football in China has undergone significant growth since Xi took the nation’s helm in 2013, with clubs spending huge sums to lure some of the world’s best players to the Chinese Super League (CSL).