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China coach Marcello Lippi names Yu Dabao captain for East Asian games

China coach Marcello Lippi names Yu Dabao captain for East Asian games
From ESPN - December 7, 2017

Former Benfica winger Yu Dabao has been named captain by China coach Marcello Lippi for the East Asian Championship in Japan in the absence of veteran midfielder Zheng Zhi.

Zheng, who is closing in on his 100th cap for China, was ruled out of the tournament due to a lingering injury at the end of the Chinese Super League season. That opened the way for Lippi to name Yu as captain for the four-team tournament.

"Considering that this competition is a post-season one and our core players are on holiday, we will use this as a chance to test some new players although the results remain important too," Lippi said.

"The captain will be Yu Dabao and that decision is based on the number of appearances he has made for the national team and his experience."

Yu has played 42 times for China, but has rarely featured this season for Beijing Guoan due to injury.

He leads a team that features six players under the age of 23 and who are expected to feature in the country's attempt to win the AFC U23 Championship, which will be held in Jiangsu province next month.

Lippi has taken a 24-man squad to Japan, with Guangzhou Evergrande defender Zhang Linpeng joining the squad, despite being injured. Zhang will take no part in the tournament.

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