Sports

"I just went to take a bath"

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Coming apart at the seams

China's long-suffering national men's football team recently became embroiled in new scandal when some of its players were rumored to have violated team rules by leaving their accommodations and booking a hotel room on their own. The issue, as summarized by ChinaSmack:

Last month, rumors appeared that several members of the national football team were seen checking into hotel rooms with prostitutes or female fans. Xie Yalong, the head of the Chinese football association promised to investigate into the matter and promised the players would be punished if true. Several days ago, pictures appeared on many Chinese BBS forums like Tianya, Mop, and NetEase confirming the rumors, showing three members of the national football team with several girls returning to their hotel.

Today, a self-criticism letter written by one of the players involved surfaced in the media. As that player tells it, no hanky-panky took place during the half hour he was in the room — he had just gone to take a bath, he explained.

For readers attuned to online memes, this excuse calls to mind two recent catch phrases: "I came to buy soy sauce," and "I'm here to do push-ups." Blogger zwke predicts that "I came to take a bath" (我是来洗澡的) is poised to follow those two memes into Photoshopped images and post signatures in mainland BBSs and blogs.

The letter translated below was obtained by the Yangtse Evening Post, which wrote by way of introduction:

According to information from insiders with the Chinese Football Association (CFA) and the national team, in response to enormous outside pressure, a team member who allegedly booked an outside hotel room submitted a letter of self-criticism to CFA leaders and persons in charge of the national team. In this letter, the team member explained his actions and expressed his views of his own performance and that of the national team during the Olympics.


Respected Football Association and Other Leaders:

The unsatisfactory performance of the national team in Olympic football matches has team members upset. When the games were over, we each did some serious self-reflection and evaluation. Recently, however, everyone's been buzzing about the so-called team member hotel room incident, reflecting negatively on the image of the CFA and the national team. Because of this, I feel that I ought to clear things up and present a necessary explanation.

First, I admit that I was that team member who "booked a room." I admit that I violated team rules and went out on my own, leading to an outcome worse than I had ever imagined. I want to express my desire to accept the CFA's punishment, and as I feel that I do not fit the demands of the national team, I have decided that I shall no longer represent it in any games.

As for the hotel room incident, I want to explain to the leadership that on that evening, I only went to take a bath, and after showering, I returned to the team. The entire time I did nothing that violated team rules or professional ethics. You might ask, why didn't I shower in the team dormitory? The truth is that on that day, the water temperature adjustment in our room wasn't functioning normally — this is something you can check out for yourself. And I was in the hotel room for less than half an hour. In such a short period of time, anything else wouldn't have fit with my normal habits.

There are those who say that we national team members shoot when we shouldn't, and fail to shoot when we should. To me, this is irresponsible speech that brings great harm on me and my teammates. I personally shot twice in the first match and once in the second. Although I didn't score, this still reflects my true spirit. We tried our best.

I would also like to take this opportunity to discuss how to address our team's record at the Olympics. We lost two games and drew one. Is that unacceptable? Look at our opponents: Brazil, Belgium, and New Zealand. You've got to admit that they're definitely at a higher level than we are. But then why are we always subject to such abuse? I know that we've let football fans down, and I hope that the CFA can come forward and direct the fans not to give us so much pressure.

I also know that fans are no longer cursing out the national team or individual players; they've poured all of their anger out against the CFA leadership. This actually makes us feel even worse, because it means that the fans no longer hold out any hope for us as players. They can't fathom why Chinese football never improves. I hope that the CFA will thing about this, as I will as well. We work hard, but why do we always lose? Does working hard mean that we will always win? In the end, what does football bring to people? Who have we offended? As football players, what is the next step we ought to take in our professional careers?

Team member ×××
2008.08.28

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There are currently 9 Comments for "I just went to take a bath".

Comments on "I just went to take a bath"

sad thing is some idiots still watch it, best way is boycott the whole sh1t so investors will start to pull out and make them serious on organizational reform.

It's really a problem of the player cultivating system. That means it's hard to reform for someone.

So when he says people say the team "shoots" (射)when it should and doesn't shoot when it should, is that actually NOT supposed to be a double-entendre despite the context? Well then, I believe him, he's clearly far too clean-minded to have been off doing anything naughty.

Yes, MAC, and he's obviously not referring to his stamina in the last sentence of the third paragraph, either. Self-criticism, indeed.

i'm SHOCKED!

that is, shocked that these second-rate hacks have fans at all, much less female fans.

"I was in the hotel room for less than half an hour. In such a short period of time, anything else wouldn't have fit with my normal habits."

He manages to make the whole thing sound like a big misunderstanding AND brag about his 床上功夫. Hilarious.

The sad thing is that the Chinese women players get paid a fraction of what the men do. While this is true all over the world (except maybe in tennis and golf), I hear that the star female footballers in China really have it rough.
These guys are just acting like typical European celebrity football spoiled boys -- only without the skill! : )

I would say there was a big problem in the old system. The soccer players got the money so easy and fast, some of them went for prosititutes, gambling, this undermined the whole system. Now even no big companies would offer to sponsor the league. The government shouldn't get much involved in the matter, let the market contol it. Perhaps it is a good way to get the China soccer to the right track.

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