Cuju or Ts'u-chü is an ancient Chinese football game, also played in Korea, Japan and Vietnam. It is a competitive game that involves kicking a ball through an opening into a net. The use of hands is not allowed.[1] Invented in the Han Dynasty, it is recognized by FIFA as the earliest form of association football for which there is evidence, being first mentioned as an exercise in a Chinese military work from 3rd–2nd century BC.[2][1]

Chinese ladies playing cuju, by the Ming Dynasty painter Du Jin
Literal meaningkick ball


One Hundred Children in the Long Spring
One Hundred Children in the Long Spring (長春百子圖), a painting by Chinese artist Su Hanchen (蘇漢臣, active 1130–1160s AD), Song Dynasty

The first mention of cuju in a historical text is in the Warring States era Zhan Guo Ce, in the section describing the state of Qi. It is also described in Sima Qian's Records of the Grand Historian (under Su Qin's biography), written during the Han Dynasty.[3] A competitive form of cuju was used as fitness training for military cavaliers, while other forms were played for entertainment in wealthy cities like Linzi.[3]

During the Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD), the popularity of cuju spread from the army to the royal courts and upper classes.[4] It is said that the Han emperor Wu Di enjoyed the sport. At the same time, cuju games were standardized and rules were established. Cuju matches were often held inside the imperial palace. A type of court called ju chang was built especially for cuju matches, which had six crescent-shaped goal posts at each end.

The sport was improved during the Tang Dynasty (618–907).[5] First of all, the feather-stuffed ball was replaced by an air-filled ball with a two-layered hull. Also, two different types of goal posts emerged: One was made by setting up posts with a net between them and the other consisted of just one goal post in the middle of the field. The Tang Dynasty capital of Chang'an was filled with cuju fields, in the backyards of large mansions, and some were even established in the grounds of the palaces.[6] Soldiers who belonged to the imperial army and Gold Bird Guard often formed cuju teams for the delight of the emperor and his court.[6] The level of female cuju teams also improved. Records indicate that once a 17-year-old girl beat a team of army soldiers. Cuju even became popular amongst the scholars and intellectuals, and if a courtier lacked skill in the game, he could pardon himself by acting as a scorekeeper.[6]

Cuju flourished during the Song Dynasty (960–1279) due to social and economic development, extending its popularity to every class in society. At that time, professional cuju players were quite popular, and the sport began to take on a commercial edge. Professional cuju players fell into two groups: One was trained by and performed for the royal court (unearthed copper mirrors and brush pots from the Song often depict professional performances) and the other consisted of civilians who made a living as cuju players. During this period only one goal post was set up in the center of the field.

Bronze mirror depicting kickball

Bronze mirror dating to the Song Dynasty.


15th century Ming Dynasty depiction of cuju, from a printed book of the Water Margin.

Emperor Taizu play Cuju

Emperor Taizu of Song playing cuju with Prime Minister Zhao Pu, by the Yuan-era painter Qian Xuan (1235–1305)


The Yongle Emperor (r. 1402–1424 AD) of the Ming Dynasty observing court eunuchs playing cuju.

Kemari Matsuri at Tanzan Shrine 1

Kemari festival at Tanzan Shrine, Nara city, Nara Prefecture, Japan, photographed in 2006.

Kemari Matsuri at Tanzan Shrine 2

Kemari at play.


Historically, there were two main styles of cuju: zhuqiu and baida.

Zhuqiu was commonly performed at court feasts celebrating the emperor's birthday or during diplomatic events. A competitive cuju match of this type normally consisted of two teams with 12–16 players on each side.

Baida became dominant during the Song Dynasty, a style that attached much importance to developing personal skills. Scoring goals became obsolete when using this method with the playing field enclosed using thread and players taking turns to kick the ball within these set limits. The number of fouls made by the players decided the winner. For example, if the ball was not passed far enough to reach other team members, points were deducted. If the ball was kicked too far out, a large deduction from the score would result. Kicking the ball too low or turning at the wrong moment all led to fewer points. Players could touch the ball with any part of the body except their hands, whilst the number of players ranged anywhere from two to ten. In the end, the player with the highest score won.

Cuju began to decline during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644) due to neglect, and the 2,000-year-old sport slowly faded away.

Cuju clubs

In the 10th century, a cuju league, Qi Yun She (齊雲社) (or Yuan She), was developed in large Chinese cities. Local members were either cuju lovers or professional performers. Non-professional players had to formally appoint a professional as their teacher and pay a fee before becoming members. This process ensured an income for the professionals, unlike cuju of the Tang Dynasty. Qi Yun She organised annual national championships known as Shan Yue Zheng Sai (山岳正賽).

In popular culture

See also


  1. ^ a b "History of Football - The Origins". FIFA. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  2. ^ Post Publishing PCL. "Bangkok Post article".
  3. ^ a b Riordan (1999), 32.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-04-23. Retrieved 2008-08-06.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ "Star Wars tops Xmas toy list".
  6. ^ a b c Benn, 172.


  • Benn, Charles (2002). China's Golden Age: Everyday Life in the Tang Dynasty. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-517665-0.
  • James, Riordan (1999). Sport and Physical Education in China. London: Spon Press. ISBN 0-419-22030-5
  • Osamu Ike (2014). Kemari in Japan(in Japanese). Kyoto: Mitsumura-Suiko Shoin. ISBN 978-4-8381-0508-3
    • Summary in English pp.181-178. in French pp.185-182.

External links

Media related to Cuju at Wikimedia Commons

2019 China League Two

The 2019 Chinese Football Association Division Two League season is the 30th season since its establishment in 1989. The league is expected to be expanded to 32 teams, with 16 teams in North Group and 16 teams in South Group.

2019 Chinese FA Cup

Yanjing Beer 2019 Chinese FA Cup (Chinese: 燕京啤酒2019中国足球协会杯) is the 21st edition of the Chinese FA Cup. The cup title sponsor is Yanjing Beer. For the first time in the Chinese FA Cup's history, entrants were not seeded and the draw for each round was no longer used to all occur at the same time.

Association football

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

Association football is one of a family of football codes, which emerged from various ball games played worldwide since antiquity. The modern game traces its origins to 1863 when the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association.

Players are not allowed to touch the ball with hands or arms while it is in play, except for the goalkeepers within the penalty area. Other players mainly use their feet to strike or pass the ball, but may also use any other part of their body except the hands and the arms. The team that scores most goals by the end of the match wins. If the score is level at the end of the game, either a draw is declared or the game goes into extra time or a penalty shootout depending on the format of the competition. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA; French: Fédération Internationale de Football Association), which organises World Cups for both men and women every four years.


Chang'an ([ʈʂʰǎŋ.án] (listen); simplified Chinese: 长安; traditional Chinese: 長安) was an ancient capital of more than ten dynasties in Chinese history, today known as Xi'an. Chang'an means "Perpetual Peace" in Classical Chinese since it was a capital that was repeatedly used by new Chinese rulers. During the short-lived Xin dynasty, the city was renamed "Constant Peace" (Chinese: 常安; pinyin: Cháng'ān); the old name was later restored. By the time of the Ming dynasty, a new walled city named Xi'an, meaning "Western Peace", was built at the Sui and Tang dynasty city's site, which has remained its name to the present day.

Chang'an had been settled since Neolithic times, during which the Yangshao Culture was established in Banpo in the city's suburb. Also in the northern vicinity of the modern Xi'an, Qin Shi Huang of the Qin dynasty held his imperial court, and constructed his massive mausoleum guarded by the famed Terracotta Army.

From its capital at Xianyang, the Qin dynasty ruled a larger area than either of the preceding dynasties. The imperial city of Chang'an during the Han dynasty was located northwest of today's Xi'an. During the Tang dynasty, the area to be known as Chang'an included the area inside the Ming Xi'an fortification, plus some small areas to its east and west, and a major part of its southern suburbs. The Tang Chang'an hence, was 8 times the size of the Ming Xi'an, which was reconstructed upon the premise of the former imperial quarter of the Sui and Tang city. During its heyday, Chang'an was one of the largest and most populous cities in the world. Around AD 750, Chang'an was called a "million people's city" in Chinese records, while modern estimates put it at around 800,000–1,000,000 within city walls. According to the census in 742 recorded in the New Book of Tang, 362,921 families with 1,960,188 persons were counted in Jingzhao Fu (京兆府), the metropolitan area including small cities in the vicinity.

China League Two

The Chinese Football Association Division Two League (Simplified Chinese: 中国足球协会乙级联赛), or China League Two, is the third tier league of the People's Republic of China. The league is under the auspices of the Chinese Football Association. Above the League Two is the premier league - the Chinese Super League and the League One.

The league below China League Two is the Chinese Champions League.

There are two groups in League Two, northern and southern. The top four teams from each group enter the promotion play-off after each regular season. Harbin Yiteng and Chongqing F.C. reached promotion play-off final in 2011 and the two clubs were promoted to League One. In 2011, China League Two 3rd-placed team faced 2011 China League One last-placed team for a play-off match. Fujian Smart Hero Leephick which was the 3rd-placed team of 2011 China League Two has won this match against the 2011 China League One last-placed team Guizhou Zhicheng Toro and earned a spot in the 2012 China League One.

Football in China

Football in the Republic of China consists of association football (Chinese: 足球; pinyin: zúqiú) as well as the China national football team. Modern football has been one of the most well supported sports in China, since it was introduced in the early 1900s. The country was erroneously recognised by disgraced former FIFA president Joseph "Sepp" Blatter as the first to invent football, 5000 years ago through Tsu' Chu, an ancient Chinese ball game (although there is no lineage between Tsu' Chu or Cuju and modern football). It is universally accepted that football was officially formalised in England in 1863, originating from a simple game that had been played for many centuries between villages in England. .

The national governing body is the Chinese Football Association (CFA). Hong Kong and Macau have separate national teams and leagues. Association football is the most popular spectator sport in China, followed by basketball.

According to FIFA ranking on 10/08/2017, the Men's National Team is ranked 77th in the world, and according to FIFA women's world rankings on 23/6/2017, the Women's National Team is ranked 14th.

Guo Mingyue

Guo Mingyue (Simplified Chinese: 郭明月) (born 7 March 1986 in Dalian) is a Chinese football player who currently plays for China League Two side Zibo Cuju as a defender.

History of association football

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, can be traced to as far back as the ancient period in China (Han dynasty). The modern game of association football originates from cuju, an ancient Chinese football game, as recognized by FIFA. The formation of The Football Association was later implemented in London, England in 1863 based on multiple efforts to standardize the varying forms of the game. This allowed clubs to play each other without dispute and which specifically banned handling of the ball (except by goalkeepers) and hacking during open field play. After the fifth meeting of the association a schism emerged between association football and the rules played by the Rugby school, later to be called rugby football. At the time, football clubs had played by their own, individual codes and game-day rules usually had to be agreed upon before a match could commence. For example, the Sheffield Rules that applied to most matches played in the Sheffield area were a different code. Football has been an Olympic sport ever since the second modern Summer Olympic Games in 1900.


Jegichagi is a Korean traditional outdoor game derived from the Chinese game Cuju in which players kick a paper jegi into the air and attempt to keep it aloft. A jegi is similar to a shuttlecock, and is made from paper wrapped around a small coin.

In Korea, children usually play alone or with friends in winter seasons, especially on Lunar New Year. Briefly explaining the rules, the player kicks a jegi up in the air and keeps on kicking to prevent from falling to the ground. In a one-to-one game, a player with the most number of consecutive kicks wins. In a group game, the players stand in a circle, and take turns kicking the Jegi. Players who fail to kick the jegi upon receiving it and let it drop to the ground lose. As a penalty, the loser tosses the jegi at the winner so that he can kick it as he wishes. When the loser catches the jegi back with his hands, the penalty ends and he can rejoin the game. This has developed, and people combined two or three materials and made new ways of playing jegichagi. Though the game was traditionally mostly played in winter, it has become a year-round game.


Jianzi (Chinese: 毽子), tī jianzi (踢毽子), tī jian (踢毽) or jianqiú (毽球), also known by other names, is a traditional Chinese national sport in which players aim to keep a heavily weighted shuttlecock in the air by using their bodies, apart from the hands, unlike in similar games peteca and indiaca. The primary source of jianzi is a Chinese ancient game called cuju of the Han dynasty 2000 years ago. Jianzi's competitive sport types are played on a badminton court using inner or outer lines in different types of jianzi's competitive sports, respectively. It can also be played artistically, among a circle of players in a street or park, with the objective to keep the shuttle 'up' and show off skills. In Vietnam, it is known as đá cầu and is the national sport. In the Philippines, it is known as sipa and was also the national sport until it was replaced by arnis in December 2009.

In recent years, the game has gained a formal following in Europe, the United States, and elsewhere.

In English, both the sport and the object with which it is played are referred to as "shuttlecock" or "featherball".


Kemari (Japanese: 蹴鞠) is a ball game that was popular in Japan during the Heian period. Kemari has been revived in modern times.

Lin Xiang

Lin Xiang (born 24 September 1991 in Shanghai) is a Chinese footballer who currently plays for Zibo Cuju in the China League Two.

List of Chinese football transfers winter 2019

This is a list of Chinese football transfers for the 2019 season winter transfer window. Super League and League One transfer window opened on 1 January 2019 and closed on 28 February 2019. League Two transfer window opened on 1 February 2019 and closed on 1 March 2019. It extended for three days to 3 March 2019 especially for the transfer in of Shaanxi Chang'an Athletic and transfer out of Yanbian Funde after Yanbian Funde was disqualified for the 2019 season due to owing taxes.

List of Montenegrin folk songs

List of Montenegrin folk songs:

Aj kad prošetah šefteli sokakom

Cetinje ponos grade

Crna Goro zemljo moja

Crnogorac sa planine

Djetelina do koljena

Donji kraj

Eh, da mi je, da me želja mine

Ja sam Crnogorac

Još ne sviće rujna zora

Katunski Oro

Kom planina

Kotorskim ulicama

Kralj Nikola na umoru

Na Svetoga Nikolu

Niđe nebo nije plavo kao iznad Crne Gore

Oj Đevojko

Oj đevojko Milijana

Oj vesela veselice

Oj svijetla majska zoro

Pjevaj Maro

Pod Lovćenom

Poljem se vija

Razbolje se zorna Zorka

Sestra mi se udaje

Svat do svata kum do kuma

Svi pljevaljski tamburaši

Šetajući pored Ljubovića

Tamo đe se gusle čuju

Volim te Crna Goro

Men Yang

Men Yang (Chinese: 门阳; born 20 February 1991 in Luoyang) is a Chinese football player who currently plays for China League Two side Zibo Cuju.

His father is former footballer Men Wenfeng.

Sports before 1001

This article presents a chronology of sporting development and events from time immemorial until the end of the 10th century CE. The major sporting event of the ancient Greek and Roman periods was the original Olympic Games, which were held every four years at Olympia for over a thousand years. Gladiatorial contests and chariot racing were massively popular. Some modern sports such as archery, athletics, boxing, football, horse racing and wrestling can directly trace their origins back to this period while later sports like cricket and golf trace their evolution from basic activities such as hitting a stone with a stick.

Yubi lakpi

Yubi lakpi is a seven-a-side traditional football game played in Manipur, India, using a coconut, which has some notable similarities to rugby. Despite these similarities, the name is not related to the game of rugby or Rugby School in England, it is in fact of Meitei origin, and means literally "coconut snatching". Emma Levine, an English writer on little known Asian sports, speculates:

"Perhaps this was the root of modern rugby? Most Manipuris are quite adamant that the modern world 'stole' the idea from them and made it into rugby... this game, which has been around for centuries, is so similar to rugby, which evolved a great deal later, that it must be more than a coincidence."However, traditional football games can be found in many parts of the world, e.g. marn grook in Australia, cuju in China and calcio Fiorentino in Italy and Levine provides no documentary or material evidence of its antiquity.


Zibo (pronounced [tsɨ́.pwǒ]; Chinese: 淄博) is a prefecture-level city in central Shandong province, China. It borders the provincial capital of Jinan to the west, Laiwu and Tai'an to the southwest, Linyi to the south, Weifang to the east, Dongying to the northeast, and Binzhou to the north.

Zibo governs 5 districts (Zhangdian, Zichuan, Boshan, Zhoucun and the Linzi) and each of these Chinese districts has a distinct downtown area of its own. The T-shaped city has a total area of 5,938 km2 (2,293 sq mi), including the counties of Huantai, Gaoqing, and Yiyuan. Zibo's total population is 4.53 million according to the 2010 census, of which 4,412,016 inhabitants live in the metro (built-up) area comprising the 5 urban districts, Huantai county (currently still under construction) and now also Zouping County situated in the municipality of Binzhou, largely being conurbated.

Zibo was the centre of the ancient State of Qi, whose capital Linzi was the most populous city in the east about 3000 years ago. Zibo is the birthplace of ancient football Cuju, which according to FIFA, was the earliest form of the sport. Pu Songling, a well-known writer of the Qing Dynasty, is one of the most famous people from Zibo. As the birthplace of Qi culture, Zibo is a notable tourist city.

Manufacturing holds an important place of the city's economy, in particular ceramics manufacturing. Other key industries include the petrochemical industry, pharmaceuticals, metallurgy, construction materials, machinery and textile. High and new-technology industries, such as new materials, fine chemicals, electronics and information, and biological medicines are also developing rapidly.

According to the 2007-08 Global City Competitiveness Report released by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Zibo was among the top 20 cities in the world that experienced the fastest economic growth between 2001 and 2005. According to the Oriental Outlook MagazineIssue No.1, 2009, Zibo ranks No. 1 on the list of cities that have reasonable real estate prices in China, also ranking No. 2 on the list of cities with good public security. In 2009, the city received the award of "Best 10 Harmonious Cities that enjoy Sustainable Development in China".

Zibo Cuju F.C.

Zibo Cuju Football Club (Chinese: 淄博蹴鞠足球俱乐部) is an amateur Chinese football club that currently participates in the China League Two. The team is based in Zibo.

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Hanyu Pinyincùjú
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