Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo step aside --
the hottest striker in world football at the
moment is China's "Nine-Goal Diva" Wang
Shanshan. She scored 9 goals in 29 minutes at
the ongoing Asian Games.
Wang earned that nickname from Chinese fans
and media when after coming off the bench in a
16-0 demolition of Tajikistan on Monday at the
Asian Games in Indonesia.
The forward has found the net a total of 11
times, netting in the 7-0 opening victory over
Hong Kong and adding a soaring header as
China's women beat formidable North Korea 2-0
on Wednesday to top their group and make the
quarter-finals in style.
China's free-scoring women, yet to concede a
goal, are being feted back home and 28-year-old
Wang, in particular, is making headlines for her
astonishing prowess in front of goal.
There have been tongue-in-cheek suggestions
that she could be the answer to the goal-scoring
problems of the Chinese men.
Wang's sizzling form is all the more surprising
because prior to the past week she was hardly
prolific, although she did catch eyes by scoring a
backheel volley against South Korea last year --
the kind of exquisite strike that Messi and
Ronaldo would be proud of.
She currently plies her trade in China's little-
noticed domestic women's league.
"For the past three group matches, Wang
Shanshan scored 11 goals and became Chinese
women's football's talisman," China's Tencent
Sports said in an online article.
"In more crucial tournaments, Wang Shanshan
will become the key player in helping the
women's team win gold."
Against the North Koreans, midfielder Wang
Shuang, who recently signed for Paris Saint-
Germain's women's team, opened the scoring in
the eighth minute, finishing off a fluid passing
"China's women really have the chance to win
the gold medal. The team is blessed to have
Wang Shuang and Wang Shanshan in this era,"
said one fan on Weibo, China's equivalent of
China's evening ended on a sour note, however,
after substitute Zhao Rong was sent off at the
end and coach Jia Xiuquan followed her for
complaining to officials.
China's men play Saudi Arabia in the last 16 on
Friday at the Asian Games, although they have
struggled for goals in international football in