The Chinese Football Association has announced reforms which look likely to limit the number of Premier League and European stars to their shores.
Several high-profile players have joined the Chinese Super League following big-money transfers, with Carlos Tevez reported to have become the most highly-paid star in world football after his switch to Shanghai Shenhua.
However, in a move which could impact on further stellar signings, the Chinese FA confirmed in a statement on the organisation’s official website that new rules would be brought in from the start of the 2017 domestic campaign, which is scheduled for March.
The changes will also see two Chinese players aged under 23 named in matchday squads, at least one of whom must start the game.
A statement from the Chinese FA said the new system would help “carry out the requirements of the overall plan for reform and development of Chinese football” which includes the development of home-grown players and improving the national team squad by “the healthy, stable and sustainable development of a professional league.”
The Chinese FA also plan to look into “recent irrational club investment, high pay for domestic and international players’ transfer fees and player compensation” while also introducing “a series of measures and initiatives to regulate the operation and management of the clubs.”
Chelsea midfielders Oscar and John Mikel Obi have both recently moved to clubs in China.
Belgium midfielder Axel Witsel, former Chelsea forward Demba Ba and ex-Newcastle striker Obafemi Martins are also among those to have signed with Chinese Super League teams before the announcement of the new regulations.
Chelsea striker Diego Costa, meanwhile, has been linked with an £80million switch to Tianjin Quanjian, and with wages on offer said to be some £30m a year.
The transfer window in China is open until February 28.