The 2023 Chinese Super League has completed one-third of the season's schedule

The championship pattern is unexpected The relegation group has been thrown off

On the evening of May 5, Shanghai Port defeated Changchun Yatai 29-3 away from home. So far, the 0 Chinese Super League season has completed 2023/1 of the full season schedule. Harbour sit firmly at the top of the table with 3 wins, 8 draws and 2 points. In stark contrast, promoted polo team Nantong Zhiyun, who finished bottom of the table with only one win, three draws and six defeats, finished bottom of the table with six points.

Affected by multiple factors such as comprehensive strength and the stability of the club's operating environment, the competition level of the Chinese Super League in the 2023 season has gradually opened up after the first 10 rounds of competition.

Leading the first 10 rounds: Shanghai Port is firmly at the top of the standings

After the 10 rounds of the Chinese Super League this season, Shanghai Port, Chengdu Rongcheng, Shanghai Shenhua and Tianjin Jinmen Tigers are temporarily in the top 4 of the standings, of which except for Shenhua, which lost away to Rongcheng, the remaining 4 teams have maintained unbeaten records in the new season.

As champions of the Chinese Super League in 2018, Harbour are poised to make a comeback this season. Especially after international player Wu Lei returned to the Chinese Super League after staying in the second half of last year, and the number one star Oscar stayed in peace, the staffing of the harbor team is obviously in the leading position in the league. Although new coach Javier did not take over until the season opener, the team's local players, between local players and foreign helpers, are relatively in place. The harbour attack line with Wu Lei as the core has scored 10 goals in 19 rounds, leading the Chinese Super League goal list, and Wu Lei himself also leads the individual goalscorer list with 7 goals. Meanwhile, Harbour conceded seven goals the league's fewest goals, so it stands to reason that they lead the standings.

The progress is obvious: Rongcheng and Jinmen enter the first group of the league

Among the above 4 teams, the progress of Chengdu Rongcheng team, as the "second-year student" of the Chinese Super League, is obvious. Last season, the team ended up in 5th place in the league as a promoted team, thus becoming a veritable "dark horse". This season, the team has become stronger after the introduction of attackers Axon, iron guard Tang Miao and others. Coupled with the fact that South Korean coach Seo Jung-won has managed the team for two consecutive seasons, and the club and the team have gradually improved, it is not surprising that the team ended the top 5/5 of the season with an unbeaten record of 1 wins and 3 draws.

Equally eye-catching is the Tianjin Jinmen Tigers. Unlike some other teams that have expanded their camp through batch signings, the improvement of the Tigers this season has largely benefited from the stability of the club, including the stability of the staffing of players and coaching staff. For example, international Barton, under the careful tutelage of coach Yu Genwei, has become one of the hottest local attackers in the league. Staffing across the squad's other lines is also generally stable. It is worth noting that the 4 teams temporarily in the first group of league competition are not plagued by negative problems such as salary arrears, and the club's support for the team can continue to be in a steady state of fine water, so coaches and players can focus on "leading the team and playing well" without distractions.

The teams ranked 5th to 8th in the provisional standings are Changchun Yatai, Beijing Guoan, Wuhan Three Towns and Shandong Taishan. Coincidentally, all four teams have won the Chinese Super League, with Three Towns and Taishan being champions in the past two seasons. If you look at the strength of the cards, the three teams of Guoan, Three Towns, and Taishan respectively, as the personnel of the national team, have all kinds of strong support, and should have the strength to join the first group of competition and even impact the championship. However, several teams in the first stage of the league were either affected by new signings, improper coaches, or financial crises, changes of coaches and other factors, resulting in ups and downs.

Unsatisfactory: Manatee and Zhiyun did not adapt to the rhythm of the league

After 10 rounds, the last four places in the provisional standings are Henan team, Qingdao Manatee team, Dalian team and Nantong Zhiyun team. Among them, the two teams of Manatee and Zhiyun, as promoted polo teams, have a relatively obvious gap in strength with the old Chinese Super League teams, in addition, after being promoted to the Chinese Super League, they seem to have not fully adapted to the rhythm of the league. With a tight league schedule and a weak bench and low resilience evident, it may be a more appropriate emergency measure for them to use the transfer summer window to replenish new signings in time.

As for the Henan team and Dalian people, they are more trapped by the brain drain that lasts for several seasons. For example, Zhou Dingyang, who was the only player in Henan in the past, has now worn the armband of the captain of the Rongcheng team, and as one of the few international players in the Dalian team in the past few seasons, players such as Li Shuai, Tong Lei, Sun Guowen and others have successively switched to giants such as Port and Taishan. The "pressing and fighting" tactics promoted by coach Xie Hui seem to have been "eaten through" by more and more opponents, and in the context of the shortage of high-quality talents, Xie Hui needs to inject more "variables" into the deployment of skills and tactics.

Although the competition in the remaining 2/3 of the league schedule will become more intense, from the first 10 rounds, the gap between the strength and weakness of the Super League brigades in the new season has gradually widened, and a considerable number of clubs can also give a more sober positioning of the team's ability and goals through the first 10 rounds of matches. Driven by the AFC Champions League ticket and the desire for relegation, the teams will fall into a more complicated and fierce "strangle" in the next stage of the league.

(Beijing Youth Daily / Reporter Xiao Zhao / Du Rui)