The Chinese Premier Xi Jinping is England on a much heralded diplomatic visit and today he visited the National Football Museum in Manchester.
Since he's been in England, Premier Xi has been given the red carpet treatment and state banquets with all the trimmings. Today he was on hand to see former Chinese international and Manchester City player Sun Jihai inducted the English Football Hall of Fame alongside some of the greatest footballers to have ever graced the English game.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) October 23, 2015
It's fair to say some fans of the English game haven't been best pleased with the new inductee. Labour's shadow sports minister, Clive Efford, has reacted angrily to the induction:
This devalues our entire Hall of Fame. It is corruption worthy of Sepp Blatter. How will all those other players feel when they see Sun Jihai is up there with the rest of them?
If you can purchase a place in the Hall of Fame then it is a distortion of the entire process. I suppose next we will see players from Dubai or the United Arab Emirates anointed in return for a few business deals with those countries.
Twitter has also had it's say on the induction of Sun Jihai.
— Sam Munnery (@SamMunnery) October 23, 2015
Sun Jihai?!?! https://t.co/GaG9PlEOjm
— Ed Malyon (@eaamalyon) October 23, 2015
First question at today's daily Downing Street briefing: Does the PM approve of Sun Jihai being inducted into football hall of fame? #friday
— William James (@WJames_Reuters) October 23, 2015
Sun Jihai (3 goals in 130) to enter football hall of fame - with Charlton, Best etc. That really is bending over too far for President Xi
— Simon Jack (@BBCSimonJack) October 23, 2015
To be fair to him, he did play 130 league games for Man City before it was cool so well deserved we say.