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Ex-Brazil striker Ronaldo to open 30 soccer schools China

Image: Two-time World Cup winner Ronaldo will open soccer schools in China

Brazilian great Ronaldo is to open 30 soccer schools in China as the country tries to develop its infrastructure and become a global player in football.

According to Chinese news outlet Xinhua News, the former Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan striker will travel to the country to open the first soccer school in Beijing in November. Shanghai and Shenzhen are among the other franchise locations.

The move comes as Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is known to be a soccer fan, attempts to resurrect the image of sport in the country, with a view to one day hosting the World Cup.

The Chinese Super League is experiencing a renaissance with a number of Brazilian internationals - including Robinho and Diego Tardelli, as well as former national-team manager Luiz Felipe Scolari - all joining top-flight clubs.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - MAY 07: Brazil national team coach Luiz Felipe Scolari speaks during the announcement of the squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup
Image: Ex-Brazil and Chelsea boss Scolari is boss of Guangzhou Evergrande

Two-time World Cup winner Ronaldo, now 39, said the speed of development and Xi's ambition had been factors behind his move.

"Besides business factor, the major reason for me to open soccer school in China is because there are lots of soccer fans and players in the country, and Chinese government and civil organisation also focus on soccer development," Ronaldo told Xinhua News.

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Image: Ronaldo believes Chinese youngsters can benefit from his expertise

"I hope my method of soccer training could help develop Chinese soccer. I think Chinese soccer has the mass base and determination, but it may still lack the proper concept and training."

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