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Qin banished to reserves after Witsel clash

Shanghai Shenhua midfielder Qin Sheng has been banished to the reserve team - and could face a pay cut - following his red card against Tianjin Quanjian on Saturday.

China international Qin was dismissed for stamping on the foot of Belgium international Axel Witsel while awaiting a corner after just 24 minutes and was correctly dismissed.

The 30-year-old apologised after the game - which finished in a 1-1 draw - but that was not enough to save him from extreme disciplinary measures.

A statement from club president Wu Xiaohui read: "The extremely irrational behaviour of Qin Sheng has severely tarnished the image of this club, the football of Shanghai and even Chinese football.

"All the efforts made by others have gone down the drain because of him.

"Given Qin Sheng was shown a yellow card in the season opener, we intentionally warned him for his poor on-field behaviour before the game. However, our repeated warnings have not prevented this happening.

"I don't think he was just caught up in the heat of the moment. Instead, it’s a flagrant violation of the club management."

Qin has also been fined 300,000 yuan (£36,000) and could be hit in the pocket further if the club does not see in an improvement in attitude.

A Shenhua statement added: "The club will see his attitude and follow-up performances, and decide whether to cut his annual salary.

"While pursuing competitive achievements, the club will not loosen its management over players. We will take this as a lesson to avoid incidents like this."