Linzi Football Museum. [Photo/zbta.net]
The Linzi Football Museum – in Zibo city in East China's Shandong province --showcases the origins, development and popularization of football over the past 2,400 years.
Covering an area of 11,800 square meters in Zibo's Linzi district, the museum integrates sightseeing, recreation, cultural and historical research with cultural and innovative product development. It has attracted over 100,000 people, who have come there to learn the history of football since it opened to the public in 2005.
The ancient Chinese game of cuju, which has been traced back to the Linzi district of Zibo, was acknowledged by the world soccer organization FIFA as the earliest form of football in 2004. The word "cu" means to kick, while "ju" refers to an ancient type of leather ball filled with feathers.
Cuju was listed among the first group of China's "intangible cultural heritage" items in 2006.