Hulk in hot water over Oscar protest

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Hulk celebrates scoring for Shanghai SIPG against Guizhou Zhicheng.

Hulk was hauled before the Chinese Football Association yesterday as the fallout from an eight-game ban handed to Shanghai SIPG teammate Oscar rumbles on.

SIPG manager Andre Villas-Boas travelled with the Brazil striker to CFA headquarters in Beijing, with another Shanghai player, Wu Lei, also present, a club spokeswoman said.

Hulk, who has hit nine goals in the Chinese Super League this season, and Chinese international Wu wore T-shirts in support of the banned Oscar after SIPG beat Henan Jianye 4-1 at the weekend. The club spokeswoman declined to give further details and said only that the CFA hearing was "related" to the T-shirts.

Hulk's top had the words NOTHING TO DO, NOTHING TO SAY written on it, the same phrase as on a T-shirt worn by Oscar and which has become an unofficial rallying cry for SIPG fans angry at the CFA.

It is the second time in as many months that the 30-year-old Hulk has gone before Chinese football chiefs — last month he was accused of punching the assistant coach of another club. Hulk denied the accusation and no further action was taken.

Brazil's Oscar was the latest big-name foreign import to hit trouble in China when he was slapped with the lengthy suspension last week for triggering a mass brawl in a league game. SIPG, second in the table under the Portuguese Villas-Boas, this week warned fans to cool it after they protested at Sunday's home game over Oscar's punishment.

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