Reporter (hereinafter referred to as Ji): what is your feeling after becoming the head coach of the national team?
Li Tie (hereinafter referred to as Li): I am very happy and proud. I told my eldest daughter that my father has realized a very important dream in life, because this is a very important goal since I became a coach. The goal in the near future is very simple. I hope to build a national team with good fighting ability and good style in a very short time. This team must be united, must have a strong sense of discipline, and can do everything on the pitch.
It took me 35 years to become the head coach of the national football team from a kid who cant play. I would like to express my gratitude to two teachers, coach Zhang Yin and coach Zhu Guanghu, who are my role models. Its an honor and a responsibility to become a national football coach.
Everyone hopes that Chinese football can get better and better, but for me, I want to start from my daily work. I learned from Milu that attitude is everything.. So many years of experience also told me that to succeed, first of all, we must do a good job in details. So I think we should have a good attitude first, and then do our work well every day.
Li: since I went to Brazil in 1993, including under the education of director Zhang (Zhang Yin), I have been used to writing training notes. After that, for so many years, I almost didnt write training notes every day. When I was a player, I subconsciously thought that I would be a coach in the future. But it is clear that when I returned from Sichuan to Liaoning as assistant coach and player in 2009, I planned to become head coach of the national football team in 10-15 years.
Reporter: Chinese football is in a difficult time. Why do you have the courage to take this burden?
Li: when I was preparing for the competition, many friends sent me messages asking Li Tie why you want to take this job, saying its a big hole. I dont think these people really know me or Chinese football. It is true that Chinese football is facing great difficulties now, but for me, as long as I have the opportunity to work for the country, I will definitely make a decision without hesitation.
Is there any pressure?
What are your advantages? What makes you stand out in the competition?
Li: my advantage is my experience. I played football when I was young. I was led by Zhang, and then I went to Brazil. This is also the first time that China sent a whole team to Brazil to study. After I came back, I was very lucky. We played (2002) World Cup, and I played three games. After that, I went to the Premier League, Sun Jihai and I, this is the first time for the Chinese people to stand in the Premier League. Then I started to coach, step by step, and my experience was unique.
Li: I hope that all (players) who have the chance to come to this team must have a strong sense of national honor, have no selfish heart, and be willing to give everything to the country. This is the first principle.
Reporter: is there any chance for a veteran like Zheng Zhi to be selected?
Li: the door of the national team is open to all. It is very important to hope that they can have a good performance in the league. We will pay attention to the movement of all players, even their training. I will go to every club in the league, communicate with the manager and players, and know their first-hand information. Age is not a problem, as long as they have the level of the national team, the door is always open to them.
Reporter: the biggest change of the world cup is the domesticated players. What do you think?
Li: I think they can increase our strength. But they are the same as other Chinese players. I will not let them play the main force because they are naturalized players. Everyone is fair. Who has a high training level, who has a stable competitive state in the league, who has a position in the national team.
Reporter: there were some problems in the first few matches of the top 40, especially the match with Syria. The training effect could not be shown in the match, which may be one of the reasons for Lippis departure. How to solve it?
Li: its been a problem of Chinese football for a long time. From 2012 to Evergrande, to Perrins national team, to Lippis national team, including later experience, I have a very good understanding of these national team players, including their background, their status in the league. I am confident to help them show their best. I dont want my team to play at a super level in every game, I just want them to play normally.
Its important that I hope they have more tactical flexibility. We can make changes according to different situations of our opponents and different changes on the field, and even we have to take the initiative to make changes. So we need players who can play in many positions to be on the national team.
Reporter: the Chinese Football Association has launched the construction plan of the national team. What do you think?
Li: we need to do all our work in a short time. The pressure of working here is much greater than that of the club, so we need more professionals. I hope I can run in well in a short time, which may be a challenge for me.
(for unifying national team styles at all levels) its a step forward and an attempt. We hope to start from the national team and hope more experts can join the big national team.
Reporter: is the team saturated now? Will there be some strength in the future?
Reporter: now the most important goal is to advance to the top 12. How do you see the situation of the Chinese team?
Li: Im not very willing to think about the future results. I still hope to do a good job every day. The training in January is less than 20 days. Its very important for me. I need to tell all the coaches ideas to the players in this period of time. My immediate goal is to familiarize the players with our play as soon as possible. I hope that the players can cherish everything that Chinese football brings them, cherish the opportunity to play for their country, and play every national team game as the most important and last game in their life.
In the last four games of the top 40, I hope the players will try their best to win all the matches as much as possible. We hope to be in the top 12. Only when we are in the top 12 can we have a longer-term plan.
Reporter: you once said that Chinese football should have an honest attitude, less twists and turns. Dont blame Chinese football. As the head coach of the national team, what do you think of these concerns?
Li: there is no doubt that this is a good thing. But I still hope that you can give more encouragement to the national team members. They really need encouragement. We sometimes joke that Chinese football is like our own children. If you scold your own children every day, can your children have confidence? So try a different way, give them more encouragement, maybe there will be surprises.
Reporter: your experience is very rich, almost every one or two years there are relatively big changes, how do you do it?
Li: Im a very planned person. My goal is very clear, and then I will follow it. But Im a person who likes to take on challenges. I actually had a good life in Liaoning in 2012, but I gave up my comfortable life and went to Evergrande to work with coach Lippi. After working for several years, if I dont leave, I can still have a comfortable job in Evergrande now, but I still resolutely left Evergrande to go to Huaxia. We have brought China from the top to the Super League, and we have achieved very good results in the Super League. Then I went back to the national team. Then I came to Wuhan zhuoer, and I also took the team from the first class to the Super League. This year, I played the sixth place in the Super League.
Reporter: you have said that you advocate the manager mode of the Premier League. Will you enjoy this kind of authority in the national team in the future?
Li: in my two years at Wuhan drow, I have been the general manager, technical director and head coach. This should be the only one in China. This is the manager model I learned in the UK. Now in the national team, there is no doubt that it is also the manager responsibility system, but we have a huge working team to help us achieve our goals, so dont worry. The outside world has said that all players are not my choice. I want to say formally that every player is my choice.
Reporter: what are the considerations for strengthening the patriotism of players?
Reporter: What wealth does the experience of coaching with Lippi leave you?
Li: I really learned a lot from him, so I can have todays Li Tie. Lippi is a very experienced coach with great control over the team. After accepting this task, I also sent a message to coach Lippi through translation for the first time.
What does the world cup mean?
Li: the first and best time in my life is always on October 7, 2001. The dream of several generations of Chinese football is realized in my hometown Shenyang. I have played all three matches of the 2002 World Cup and have benefited for life. The future generations of Chinese football, including the efforts made now, are hoping that the national football team can enter the world cup again.
When is your contract signed in?
Li: the contract with China Football Association will be signed on June 9, 2020 (the last top 40 match of the National Football Association), and will be renewed automatically after entering the top 12 match. Even if I only sign for one day, I will sign right away. Its for the country, and I dont hesitate to do so.
Source: editor in charge of Xinhua News Agency: Xu Songyu ns1943