Super League champions Guangzhou Evergrande have fined their Latin American stars a total of 1.25 million yuan ($200,000) for arriving late to training and other violations, reports said Thursday.
Brazilian star Muriqui, the Super League's 2011 player of the year and top scorer, received the stiffest fine of 500,000 yuan for leaving the club without permission last season and arriving late this month.
The players were required to arrive in Guangzhou on January 3 to prepare for the upcoming season beginning in March. Muriqui, who arrived in Guangzhou on Wednesday, was the latest arrival, reports said.
Fellow Brazilians Cleo and Paulo were each fined 300,000 yuan for arriving late and not responding to calls from the club during their absences, Sina.com reported, citing an official club notice.
No-one at the club was available to comment when contacted by AFP.
Argentine Dario Conca, who smashed the Chinese signing record last season with a reported $10 million contract, was also fined 150,000 yuan after showing up late last Saturday.
Guangzhou, bankrolled by leading property firm Evergrande, swept to the Super League title by 15 points last season after spending millions on foreign stars just two seasons after being relegated for match-fixing.
The Super League, still seeking to recover from the damaging match-fixing and gambling scandal, is looking to for a cash injection from the nation's real estate industry to help revive the league.
Last month, Shanghai Shenhua announced the signing of former Chelsea striker Nicolas Anelka on a reported 200,000 pound (about $300,000) weekly salary, which surpasses Conca's contract.
Several Super League clubs have also reportedly been hunting the signature of Anelka's former Chelsea teammate Didier Drogba.
A Shenhua Club spokesman declined to comment Thursday following reports that Shanghai and Guangzhou are no longer interested in signing the Ivorian striker.