|Association||Chinese Football Association (CFA)|
|Sub-confederation||EAFF (East Asia)|
|Head coach||Li Xiaopeng|
|Most caps||Li Weifeng (112)|
|Top scorer||Hao Haidong (41)|
|Home stadium||Beijing National Stadium|
|Current||74 (23 December 2021)|
|Highest||37 (December 1998)|
|Lowest||109 (March 2013)|
|As not member of FIFA|
Philippines 2–1 China
(Manila, Philippines; 1 February 1913)
As member of FIFA
Philippines 0–2 China
(Manila, Philippines; 22 May 1923) 
| China PR 19–0 Guam |
(Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; 26 January 2000)
| Brazil 8–0 China PR |
(Recife, Brazil; 10 September 2012)
|Appearances||1 (first in 2002)|
|Best result||Group stage (2002)|
|Appearances||12 (first in 1976)|
|Best result||Runners-up (1984, 2004)|
|Appearances||8 (first in 2003)|
|Best result||Champions, (2005, 2010)|
The China national football team (simplified Chinese: 中国国家足球队; traditional Chinese: 中國國家足球隊; pinyin: Zhōng guó guó jiā zú qiú duì, recognized as China PR by FIFA) represents the People's Republic of China in international association football and is governed by the Chinese Football Association.
China won the EAFF East Asian Cup in 2005 and 2010, was runner-up at the AFC Asian Cup in 1984 and 2004, and made its sole FIFA World Cup appearance in 2002, losing all matches without scoring a goal.
China's first-ever international representative match was arranged by Elwood Brown, president of the Philippine Athletic Association, who proposed the creation of the Far Eastern Championship Games, a multi-sport event considered to be a precursor to the Asian Games. He invited China to participate in the inaugural 1913 Far Eastern Championship Games held in the Philippines, which included association football within the schedule. To represent them, it was decided that the winner of the football at the Chinese National Games in 1910 should have the honour to represent the country, where it was won by South China Football Club. The club's founder and coach Mok Hing (Chinese 莫慶) would become China's first coach and on 4 February 1913 in a one-off tournament game held in the Manila he led China to a 2–1 defeat against the Philippines national football team.
The political unrest of the Xinhai Revolution that mired China's participation in the first tournament, especially in renaming the team as Republic of China national football team, did not stop Shanghai being awarded the 1915 Far Eastern Championship Games. Once again South China Football Club, now known as South China Athletic Association won the right to represent the nation. This time in a two legged play-off against the Philippines, China won the first game 1–0 and then drew the second 0–0 to win their first ever tournament. With the games being the first and only regional football tournament for national teams outside Britain, China looked to establish themselves as a regional powerhouse by winning a total of nine championships.
The Chinese Football Association was founded in 1924 and then was first affiliated with FIFA in 1931. With these foundations in place China looked to establish themselves within the international arena and along with Japan were the first Asian sides to participate in the Football at the Summer Olympics when they competed within the 1936 Summer Olympics held in Germany. At the tournament China were knocked out within their first game at the round of 16 when they were beaten by Great Britain Olympic football team 2–0 on 6 August 1936.
On 7 July 1937 the Second Sino-Japanese War officially erupted, which saw the relations between China and Japan completely eroded especially once it was announced that Japan would hold the 1938 Far Eastern Championship Games. The tournament would be officially cancelled while Japan held their own tournament called the 2600th Anniversary of the Japanese Empire, which included the Japanese puppet states Manchukuo and the collaborationist National Reorganised Government of China based in occupied Nanjing. But none of the top Chinese players competed in the Japanese Empire anniversary games. None of the games during the Second Sino-Japanese War are officially recognized and once the war ended on 9 September 1945 China looked to the Olympics once again for international recognition. On 2 August 1948 China competed in the Football at the 1948 Summer Olympics where they were once again knocked out in the last sixteen, this time by Turkey national football team in a 4–0 defeat. When the players returned they found the country in the midst of the Chinese Civil War. When it ended, the team had been split into two, one called the People's Republic of China national football team and the other called Republic of China national football team (later renamed Chinese Taipei national football team).
The newly instated People's Republic of China reformed CFA before having FIFA acknowledge their 1931 membership on 14 June 1952. Finland, who were one of the first nations to hold diplomatic relations with China's new government, invited the country to take part in the 1952 Summer Olympics. Li Fenglou would become the country's first permanent manager to lead them in the tournament, however the Chinese delegation was delayed and they missed the entire competition, nevertheless the Finland national football team would still greet Li and the Chinese team with a friendly game on 4 August 1952 making it People's Republic of China's official first game, which ended in a 4–0 defeat. In preparation for entering their first FIFA competition, China sent a young squad to train in Hungary in 1954. However, when they entered the 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification process China were knocked out by Indonesia.
On 7 June 1958, China stopped participating within any FIFA recognised football events when FIFA officially started to recognise the Republic of China as a different country. This sparked a diplomatic argument that had already seen China withdraw from the 1956 Summer Olympics for the same reasons. For years the People's Republic of China would only play in friendlies with nations who recognized them as the sole heir to the China name. On 25 October 1971 the United Nations would recognise the country as the sole heir to the China name in their General Assembly Resolution 2758 act. In 1973 the team, which had been using the name Republic of China would rename themselves as Chinese Taipei. These acts would see China rejoin the international sporting community, first by becoming a member of the Asian Football Confederation in 1974 and by rejoining FIFA again in 1979.
The 1974 Asian Games reintroduced the team back into international football while the 1976 AFC Asian Cup saw them came third.
In 1980, China participated in the 1982 FIFA World Cup qualifiers for a berth in the 1982 World Cup, but they lost a play-off game against New Zealand. During the 1986 FIFA World Cup qualifiers for the 1986 World Cup, China faced Hong Kong at home in the final match of the first qualifying round on 19 May 1985 where China only needed a draw to advance. However, Hong Kong produced a 2–1 upset win which resulted in riots inside and outside the stadium in Beijing. During the 1990 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, China again reached the final round. They just missed out on qualifying as they conceded two goals in the final three minutes against Qatar in their final group match. During the 1994 FIFA World Cup qualifiers - when they were led by their first ever foreign manager, Klaus Schlapner, Still, China get defeated by Yemen and Iraq in away game- failed to reach the final round of qualifying, coming second behind Iraq.
In 1987, the first Chinese footballers moved abroad when future national team player Xie Yuxin joined FC Zwolle (Netherlands) and ex-national teamer Gu Guangming joined SV Darmstadt 98 (Germany). In 1988, national team captain Jia Xiuquan and striker Liu Haiguang both joined FK Partizan (Yugoslavia).
After failing to reach the 1998 FIFA World Cup, China appointed Serbian manager Bora Milutinović as coach of the national team, and China saw its fortune increased. The country managed to take fourth-place finish in the 2000 AFC Asian Cup where the Chinese side performed well, and only fell to heavyweights Japan and South Korea by one goal margin. The good performance in Lebanon boosted the confidence of Chinese side, and in 2002 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, China lost only the last one and drew only one, winning all the remaining games, most notably an important 1–0 win over Oman, to finally reach the 2002 FIFA World Cup, its first and only World Cup up to date. In the 2002 World Cup, China was drawn into death team along with the favorite dogs Brazil, Turkey, Costa Rica, was eliminated after three matches without gaining a single point nor even scoring a goal during their participation in the tournament.
China hosted the 2004 AFC Asian Cup, ultimately fell 1–3 to Japan in a final match. The match's outcome sparked anger among Chinese supporters, who rioted in response to bad refereeing. There were an estimated 250 million viewers for the match, the largest single-event sports audience in the country's history at that time.
After winning the 2005 East Asian Football Championship following a 2–0 win against North Korea, they started qualification for the 2007 AFC Asian Cup. During this time, the team became the subject of immense criticism and national embarrassment in the media when they had managed to score only one goal, Shao Jiayi's penalty kick during injury time, against Singapore at home and only managed a draw with Singapore in the away game. During preparations for the 2007 AFC Asian Cup, the team spent the weeks leading up to the tournament on a tour of the United States. While the 4–1 loss to the United States was not unexpected, a 1–0 loss to Major League Soccer side Real Salt Lake which finished bottom of the league in the 2007 season caused serious concern.
During the 2007 AFC Asian Cup, the team played three group matches, winning against Malaysia, drawing with Iran after leading 2–1, and losing 3–0 to Uzbekistan. After high expectations, China's performance at the tournament drew criticism online which condemned the team's members and even the association. Zhu was later replaced as manager by Vladimir Petrović after these performances. Some commented that China's reliance on foreign managers for the past decade had been an indicator of its poor domestic manager development.
In June 2008, China failed to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, losing against Qatar and Iraq at home. After the 2008 Summer Olympics, Petrović was sacked as the manager and Yin Tiesheng was announced as the team's caretaker.
In April 2009, China appointed Gao Hongbo as the new manager, replacing Yin Tiesheng. His arrival saw China opt for a new strategy, turning towards ground passing tactics and adopting the 4–2–3–1 formation. It was noted that Chinese footballers had relied too heavily on the long ball tactic for almost a decade. Wei Di, the chief of the Chinese Football Association, stressed that, "Anytime, no matter win or loss, they must show their team spirit and courage. I hope, after one year's effort, the national team can give the public a new image." Gao was knocked out of the 2011 AFC Asian Cup's group stage. His winning percentage (65%), the highest for a Chinese manager since Nian Weisi (67.86%), did not defer the Chinese Football Association from replacing him with José Antonio Camacho in August 2011, less than a month before the qualification process for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
On 13 August 2011, José Antonio Camacho was appointed as the new manager of the team, signing a three-year deal for a reported annual salary of $8 million. Wei Di, CFA chief, explained the decision as being part of a long-term plan to help the country catch up with rivals Japan and South Korea. He noted that, "Compared with our neighbours Japan and South Korea, Chinese football is lagging far behind, we need to work with a long-term view and start to catch up with a pragmatic approach. A lot of our fans expect China to qualify for the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil. They are afraid that changing the coach at the last moment may cause bad effect to the team's qualifying prospect. I can totally understand that. But we do not have any time to waste."
Yu Hongchen, the vice-president of the Chinese Football Administrative Centre, also stated, "The qualifying stage of 2014 World Cup is just a temporary task for him. Even if the task is failed, Camacho will not lose the job. When we started to find a new coach for the national team, we mainly focus on European countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Spain. First of all, they have advanced football concepts, and secondly they have a productive youth training system, which we can learn from. We hope he can help us to find a suitable style."
Camacho managed a team to an 8–0 loss against Brazil on 10 September 2012 which would go on record as China's biggest ever international defeat. This massive loss also succumbed China to their worst ever FIFA ranking (109th).
Camacho led China during their qualification process for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup whereby losing the first group match 2–1 to Saudi Arabia. After a 5–1 loss against Thailand in a friendly, Camacho sacked a week as manager with Fu Bo assigned as the caretaker.
After Camacho, there was Alain Perrin, who finally led China to qualify for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, which also included luck from the Thailand–Lebanon encounter, in which Thailand lost but salvaged an important goal by Adisak Kraisorn to help improve China's goal difference with the Lebanese. Soon after that, Perrin led China into a series of friendlies, where some positive results against Macedonia, Kuwait, Paraguay and Thailand boosted some optimism.
In the 2015 Asian Cup, Perrin's China was placed in a group with Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan and North Korea. China emerged victoriously in all three games, qualified for the knockout stage for the first time since the 2004 edition. The Chinese Dragons then lost to host Australia 0–2 with Tim Cahill scoring a brace.
Despite this, China's 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers immediately represented a huge problem for the Chinese side; they were held goalless by Hong Kong at home twice, and lost to Qatar. Perrin was sacked for the team's poor performance at the middle of the second round following another goalless draw to Hong Kong, and former coach Gao Hongbo returned to the role on 3 February 2016, where he had to face a task of guiding China in at the expense of North Korea which had a better second-place ranking than China. Gao's first two matches were consecutive wins against Maldives and Qatar, and with North Korea suddenly slipping out against the Philippines, these results secured the team's passage to the 2019 AFC Asian Cup and entering the final qualifying stage for the World Cup.
China continued their World Cup hunt by a 2–3 defeat to South Korea; and a goalless draw to AFC's then highest ranked Iran at home. However, China followed that with a 0–1 loss at home to Syria and 0–2 away to Uzbekistan next month. Gao Hongbo resigned. His team had been winless in the first four matches of the final qualifying stage for the World Cup, including a home loss to Syria which was criticised by a number of fans.
On 22 October 2016, Marcello Lippi was appointed manager of the team ahead for the last remaining matches. A match saw China defeat South Korea for the first time in a FIFA-sanctioned tournament, amidst the heat of tensions over South Korea's deployment of THAAD. However, China's away loss to Iran and a 2–2 draw to Syria meant China was unable to compete with and dragged behind by Syria who managed a 2–2 draw with Iran and not to be qualified for the 2018 World Cup under Lippi's tenure, but improvements could be seen following two late wins over Uzbekistan and Qatar.
Lippi led the side during the final stage of the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, where China won 2–1 to Kyrgyzstan and 3–0 to Philippines, before losing 2–0 to group leaders South Korea on 16 January. China then beat Thailand 2–1 to earn a place in the quarter-finals, where it was knocked 3–0 out by Iran; Lippi subsequently confirmed his departure.
Another Italian, Fabio Cannavaro was appointed as the next China's manager in conjunction with coaching Guangzhou Evergrande but he stepped down after only two matches.
Lacked of option in searching for a new coach, CFA reappointed Marcello Lippi. To improve the team, China had begun a series of naturalization on foreign-based players, with Nico Yennaris, an English-born Cypriot, and Tyias Browning, another English-born player, being naturalized. Subsequently, Elkeson, a Brazilian player with no Chinese ancestry, was naturalized. Despite the process of naturalization, the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification for China proved to be rockier than expected, the team could only beat the Maldives and Guam, before being held goalless in the Philippines and followed with a denting 1–2 away loss to Syria, and Lippi resigned as coach.
Former 2002 FIFA World Cup player, Li Tie, was appointed coach of China in July 2020, with a task to guide China to the third round, as China has been trailing behind Syria by five points. Under Li's tenure, China was unable to reclaim its first place due to unpromising previous results, nonetheless, China managed to win all of their remaining fixtures, including an important 2–0 win over the Philippines and notably, a 3–1 win over Syria, to guarantee China as the best second-place team, thus reaching the final phase.
The team is colloquially termed "Dragon's Team" (Chinese: 龙之队; pinyin: Lóng zhī duì), "Team China" (Chinese: 中国队), the "National Team" (Chinese: 国家队) or "Guózú" (Chinese: 国足, short for Chinese: 国家足球队; pinyin: Guójiā Zúqiú Duì; lit. 'national football team').
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to China national football team kits.|
China's home kit is traditionally all red with a white trim while their away kit is traditionally an inverted version of the home kit, fully white with a red trim. During the 1996 AFC Asian Cup, China employed a third kit which was all blue with a white trim and was used against Saudi Arabia during the tournament. The team has also started to use cooling vests in certain warmer climates. After decades of having Adidas producing the team's kits, China's current kit has been produced and manufactured by Nike since 2015.
|Nike||2015–present||2015–2026 (11 years)||$16 million per year|||
Main article: China–Japan football rivalry
The rivalry with Japan was exemplified after 3–1 defeat to this opponent in the 2004 AFC Asian Cup Final when Chinese fans began to riot near the north gate of the Worker's Stadium. The rioting was said to be provoked by controversial officiating during the tournament and the heightened anti-Japanese sentiment at the time. China's most recent tournament meeting with Japan was at the 2017 EAFF E-1 Football Championship where Japan won 2–1. China went on to finish as third-place in the tournament, while Japan finished 2nd.
Main article: China–South Korea football rivalry
Another rivalry with fellow neighbour South Korea who China played 27 matches against between 1978 and 2010, without winning a single match. The media coined the term "Koreaphobia" to describe this phenomenon, but China finally registered its first win against South Korea on 10 February 2010, winning 3–0 during the 2010 East Asian Football Championship and eventually going on to win the tournament.
Main article: China–Hong Kong football rivalry
A rivalry with Hong Kong has been created due to political tensions as well as issues during 2018 World Cup qualification. With Hong Kong fans booing the Chinese national anthem, which Hong Kong share with China, 2018 World Cup qualifier matches were also very tense with both matches resulting in 0–0 draws.
The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.
|30 May 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R2||Guam||0–7||China PR||Suzhou, China|
|19:30 UTC+8||Report (FIFA)[dead link]
|Stadium: Suzhou Olympic Sports Centre|
Referee: Sivakorn Pu-udom (Thailand)
|7 June 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R2||China PR||2–0||Philippines||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
|21:00 UTC+4||Report (FIFA)
|Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Kim Hee-gon (South Korea)
|11 June 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R2||China PR||5–0||Maldives||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
|21:00 UTC+4||Report (FIFA)
|Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Ahmed Al-Ali (Jordan)
|15 June 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R2||China PR||3–1||Syria||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
|22:00 UTC+4||Report (FIFA)
||Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Muhammad Taqi (Singapore)
|2 September 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||Australia||3–0||China PR||Doha, Qatar|
|21:00 UTC+3||Report (FIFA)||Stadium: Khalifa International Stadium|
Referee: Ko Hyung-jin (South Korea)
|7 September 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||China PR||0–1||Japan||Doha, Qatar|
|18:00 UTC+3||Report (FIFA)||
||Stadium: Khalifa International Stadium|
Referee: Nawaf Shukralla (Bahrain)
|30 September 2021 Unofficial friendly||China PR||1–1||Syria||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
||Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Attendance: 0 (Behind closed door)
|7 October 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||China PR||3–2||Vietnam||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
|21:00 UTC+4||Report (FIFA)||Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Mohammed Abdulla Hassan Mohamed (United Arab Emirates)
|12 October 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||Saudi Arabia||3–2||China PR||Jeddah, Saudi Arabia|
|20:00 UTC+3||Report (FIFA)||Stadium: King Abdullah Sports City|
Referee: Ilgiz Tantashev (Uzbekistan)
|11 November 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||China PR||1–1||Oman||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
||Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Sivakorn Pu-udom (Thailand)
|16 November 2021 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||China PR||1–1||Australia||Sharjah, United Arab Emirates|
|19:00 UTC+4||Report (FIFA)||
||Stadium: Sharjah Stadium|
Referee: Adham Makhadmeh (Jordan)
|27 January 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||Japan||2–0||China PR||Saitama, Japan|
|19:00 UTC+9||Report (FIFA)||Stadium: Saitama Stadium 2002|
Referee: Abdulrahman Al-Jassim (Qatar)
|1 February 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||Vietnam||v||China PR||Hanoi, Vietnam|
|19:00 UTC+7||Report (FIFA)||Stadium: Mỹ Đình National Stadium|
|24 March 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification R3||China PR||v||Saudi Arabia||TBD, China|
|Report (FIFA)||Stadium: TBD|
|Technical Director||Chris van Puyvelde|
|Head coach||Li Xiaopeng|
|Team Manager||He Zhang|
|Assistant Coach||Narciso Pezzotti|
|Fitness Coach||Massimo Neri|
|Technical employee||Liu Zhiyu|
|Team Doctor||Wang Shucheng|
|Press Officer||Che Hengzhi|
|Technical director||Li Jianxiao|
|1||Tong Fuk Cheung||1930 Far Eastern Games||Champions|
|2||Lee Wai Tong||1934 Far Eastern Games||Champions|
|3||Ngan Shing Kwan||1936 Summer Olympics||First round|
|4||Lee Wai Tong (2nd time)||1948 Summer Olympics||First round|
|7||Nian Weisi (2nd time)||1965–1973||28||19||6||3||97||40||67.86%|
|8||Nian Weisi (3rd time)||1974–1976||27||14||5||8||58||40||51.85%||Third place at the 1976 AFC Asian Cup|
|10||Nian Weisi (4th time)||1978||14||8||1||5||25||12||57.14%||Bronze medal at the 1978 Asian Games|
|11||Zhang Honggen (2nd time)||1979||0||0||0||0||0||0||00.00%|
|12||Nian Weisi (5th time)||1980||5||2||2||1||11||4||40.00%|
|14||Zhang Honggen (3rd time)||1982||10||3||5||2||11||10||30.00%|
|15||Zeng Xuelin||1983–1985||42||24||6||12||99||35||57.14%||Runners-up of the 1984 AFC Asian Cup|
|16||Nian Weisi (6th time)||1985–1986||26||14||7||5||44||24||53.85%|
|17||Gao Fengwen||1986–1990||56||27||13||16||112||40||48.21%||Fourth place at the 1988 AFC Asian Cup|
|*||Chen Xirong (caretaker)||1992||5||3||0||2||9||10||60.00%|
|19||Klaus Schlappner||1992–1993||25||9||6||10||35||27||36.00%||Third place at the 1992 AFC Asian Cup|
|20||Qi Wusheng||1994–1997||55||27||13||15||97||60||49.09%||Silver medal at the 1994 Asian Games|
|21||Bobby Houghton||1997–1999||17||10||3||4||36||15||58.82%||Bronze medal at the 1998 Asian Games|
|*||Jin Zhiyang (caretaker)||2000||5||5||0||0||31||0||100.00%|
|22||Bora Milutinović||2000–2002||46||20||11||15||75||50||43.48%||Group stage of the 2002 FIFA World Cup|
Fourth place at the 2000 AFC Asian Cup
|*||Shen Xiangfu (caretaker)||2002||3||1||2||0||5||3||33.33%|
|23||Arie Haan||2002–2004||30||17||7||6||52||22||56.67%||Runners-up of the 2004 AFC Asian Cup|
|24||Zhu Guanghu||2005–2007||27||9||6||12||35||37||33.33%||Winners of the 2005 East Asian Football Championship|
|25||Vladimir Petrović||2007–2008||18||6||7||5||28||16||33.33%||Third place at the 2008 East Asian Football Championship|
|*||Yin Tiesheng (caretaker)||2008–2009||6||2||0||4||11||12||33.33%|
|26||Gao Hongbo||2009–2011||38||24||10||4||65||31||63.16%||Winners of the 2010 East Asian Football Championship|
|27||José Antonio Camacho||2011–2013||20||7||2||11||23||31||35.00%|
|*||Fu Bo (caretaker)||2013–2014||9||4||4||1||18||11||44.44%||Runners-up of the 2013 EAFF East Asian Cup|
|28||Alain Perrin||2014–2016||25||11||10||4||45||18||44.00%||7th place of the 2015 AFC Asian Cup |
Runners-up of the 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup
|29||Gao Hongbo (2nd time)||2016||8||3||1||4||12||9||37.50%||Qualified - 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification – AFC Third Round|
|30||Marcello Lippi||2016–2019||30||10||9||11||35||41||33.33%||Third place of the 2017 EAFF E-1 Football Championship||
6th place of the 2019 AFC Asian Cup
|*||Fabio Cannavaro (caretaker)||2019||2||0||0||2||0||2||00.00%|
|32||Li Tie||2019–2021||13||6||2||5||27||15||46.2%||Third place of the 2019 EAFF E-1 Football Championship|
The following players were called up for the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification match against Japan and Vietnam on 27 January and 1 February 2022 respectively.
Caps and goals are correct as of 27 January 2022, after the match against Japan.
|No.||Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club|
|GK||Yan Junling||28 January 1991||40||0||Shanghai Port|
|GK||Wang Dalei||10 January 1989||27||0||Shandong Taishan|
|GK||Liu Dianzuo||26 June 1990||3||0||Guangzhou|
|DF||Zhang Linpeng||9 May 1989||89||5||Guangzhou|
|DF||Yu Dabao||17 April 1988||63||19||Beijing Guoan|
|DF||Zheng Zheng||11 July 1989||21||2||Shandong Taishan|
|DF||Wang Shenchao||8 February 1989||18||0||Shanghai Port|
|DF||Deng Hanwen||8 January 1995||12||2||Guangzhou|
|DF||Liu Yang||17 June 1995||12||0||Shandong Taishan|
|DF||Zhu Chenjie||23 August 2000||11||0||Shanghai Shenhua|
|DF||Tyias Browning||27 May 1994||10||0||Guangzhou|
|MF||Hao Junmin||24 March 1987||88||12||Wuhan|
|MF||Wu Xi||19 February 1989||78||9||Shanghai Shenhua|
|MF||Zhang Xizhe||23 January 1991||36||7||Beijing Guoan|
|MF||Chi Zhongguo||26 October 1989||21||0||Beijing Guoan|
|MF||Jin Jingdao||18 January 1992||17||1||Shandong Taishan|
|MF||Ji Xiang||1 March 1990||11||1||Shandong Taishan|
|MF||Liu Binbin||16 June 1993||8||1||Shandong Taishan|
|MF||Xu Xin||19 April 1994||3||0||Shandong Taishan|
|MF||Dai Wai Tsun||25 July 1999||1||0||Shenzhen|
|FW||Wu Lei||19 November 1991||78||27||Espanyol|
|FW||Zhang Yuning||5 January 1997||19||5||Beijing Guoan|
|FW||Wei Shihao||8 April 1995||18||2||Guangzhou|
|FW||Alan||10 July 1989||9||3||Guangzhou|
|FW||Tan Long||1 April 1988||7||1||Changchun Yatai|
|FW||Aloísio||19 June 1988||4||1||Free agent|
|FW||Fernandinho||16 March 1993||0||0||Free agent|
The following players have also been called up to the squad within the last twelve months.
|Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club||Latest call-up|
|GK||Han Jiaqi||3 July 1999||0||0||Guangzhou City||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|GK||Hou Sen||30 June 1989||0||0||Beijing Guoan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|GK||Wang Zhifeng||1 February 1997||0||0||Wuhan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|GK||Dong Chunyu||25 March 1991||0||0||Wuhan||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|GK||Zeng Cheng||8 January 1987||42||0||Shanghai Shenhua||v. Guam, 30 May 2021 INJ|
|DF||Shi Ke||8 January 1993||9||0||Shandong Taishan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Li Ang||15 September 1993||8||0||Shanghai Port||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||He Guan||25 January 1993||6||0||Shanghai Port||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Wang Tong||12 February 1993||3||0||Shandong Taishan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Li Shuai||18 June 1995||1||0||Dalian Pro||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Jiang Shenglong||24 December 2000||0||0||Shanghai Shenhua||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Wei Zhen||12 February 1997||0||0||Shanghai Port||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Wu Shaocong||20 March 2000||0||0||Guangzhou||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Zhao Honglüe||4 December 1989||0||0||Wuhan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|DF||Li Lei||30 May 1992||5||0||Grasshopper||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|DF||Wang Gang||17 February 1989||12||0||Beijing Guoan||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|DF||Gao Zhunyi||21 August 1995||9||0||Guangzhou||v. Saudi Arabia, 12 October 2021|
|DF||Tang Miao||16 October 1990||6||0||Guangzhou City||v. Syria, 15 June 2021|
|DF||Ming Tian||8 April 1995||5||0||Wuhan||v. Syria, 15 June 2021|
|DF||Jiang Zhipeng||6 March 1989||26||0||Shenzhen||Shanghai Training Camp, March 2021|
|DF||Yu Yang||6 August 1989||14||0||Beijing Guoan||Shanghai Training Camp, March 2021|
|MF||Yin Hongbo||30 October 1989||14||1||Hebei||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Xie Pengfei||29 June 1993||5||0||Cangzhou Mighty Lions||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Peng Xinli||22 July 1991||2||0||Shanghai Shenhua||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Wang Shangyuan||2 June 1993||2||0||Henan Songshan Longmen||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Gao Tianyi||1 July 1998||0||0||Beijing Guoan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Liu Ruofan||28 January 1999||0||0||Shanghai Shenhua||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Yan Dinghao||6 April 1998||0||0||Guangzhou||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|MF||Wang Qiuming||9 January 1993||0||0||Hebei||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|MF||Wu Xinghan||24 February 1993||6||1||Shandong Taishan||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|MF||Li Ke||24 May 1993||6||0||Beijing Guoan||v. Syria, 15 June 2021|
|MF||Cao Yunding||22 November 1989||5||0||Shanghai Shenhua||Shanghai Training Camp, March 2021|
|FW||Yang Liyu||13 February 1997||5||0||Guangzhou||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|FW||Wang Ziming||5 August 1996||2||0||Beijing Guoan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|FW||Guo Tianyu||5 March 1999||0||0||Shandong Taishan||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|FW||Li Shenglong||30 July 1992||0||0||Shanghai Port||Shanghai Training Camp, January 2022|
|FW||Elkeson||13 July 1989||13||4||Free agent||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
|FW||Ba Dun||16 September 1995||1||0||Tianjin Jinmen Tiger||v. Australia, 16 November 2021|
INJ Withdrew due to injury
Main article: China at the FIFA World Cup
China has only appeared at one World Cup with the appearance being in the 2002 FIFA World Cup where they finished bottom of the group which included a 4–0 loss to Brazil.
|1930||Did not enter||Declined participation|
|1958||Did not qualify||3||1||1||1||4||5|
|1962||Did not enter||Declined participation|
|1982||Did not qualify||10||6||2||2||17||6|
|2006||Did not qualify||6||5||0||1||14||1|
|2022||To be determined||14||7||3||4||37||14|
See also: China at the AFC Asian Cup
|1956||Did not enter||Did not enter|
|1960||Did not enter||Did not enter|
|1964||Did not enter||Did not enter|
|1968||Did not enter||Did not enter|
|1972||Did not enter||Did not enter|
|2004||Runners-up||2nd||6||3||2||1||13||6||Qualified as hosts|
|2023||Qualified as hosts||2*||2||0||0||12||0|
|1900 to 1928||Did not enter|
|1952 to 1956||Withdrew after qualifying|
|1960 to 1976||Not an IOC member|
|1980 to 1984||Did not qualify|
For 1992 to 2016, see China national under-23 football team
|1951||Did not enter|
|1954||Did not enter|
|1958||Did not enter|
|1962||Did not enter|
|1966||Did not enter|
|1970||Did not enter|
* Including 1998 onwards (until 2010)
For 2002 to 2018, see China national under-23 football team
Main article: China national football team results and fixtures
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||1997||1||1||0||0||3||0||+3||UEFA|
|Papua New Guinea||1985||2||1||1||0||5||2||+3||OFC|
|Republic of Ireland||1984||2||0||0||2||0||2||−2||UEFA|
|Trinidad and Tobago||2001||2||2||0||0||7||2||+5||CONCACAF|
|United Arab Emirates||1984||11||4||5||2||16||8||+8||AFC|