China wants to be a football superpower by 2050

Chinese President Xi Jinping is hoping his country can win a World Cup in 15 years

China wants to be a football superpower by 2050

Image: Joe Giddens / PA Wire/Press Association Images

China has signalled its intent to become a "superpower" of world football by 2050 and has aimed to win a World Cup in just 15 years time.

The plans, revealed by the Chinese Football Association, aims to get 50 million children and adults playing the game by 2020.

Among the targets set by the association, and supported by President Xi Jinping, is to have at least 20,000 football training centres and 70,000 pitches in place by 2020.

The men's football team should become one of the best in Asia, while the female football team should be ranked as a world-class team, by 2030, the plan stated.

China have only ever qualified for one World Cup, in 2002.

Currently, China are ranked 81st in the FIFA world rankings out of a total of 204 teams.

President Jinping, a football enthusiast, has declared that China should fulfil his three dreams of hosting, qualifying for, and winning a World Cup.

The report comes after China's 2-0 win against previously unbeaten Qatar, sending the team through to the final Asian qualifying stage for Russia 2018.