Indian Super League awaits kick-off

Tendulkar, Ganguly among team owners for the football league featuring Ljungberg, Trezeguet and others.

    The ISL has acquired services of Bollywood stars to promote the event [AFP]
    The ISL has acquired services of Bollywood stars to promote the event [AFP]

    Retired batting great Sachin Tendulkar will lead a clutch of former cricketers and movie stars in promoting the start of the Indian football league.

    Tendulkar and former India captain Sourav Ganguly are among team owners in the Indian Super League, which will have its draft for foreign players in Mumbai on Thursday when 49 big names will be available for eight franchise teams.

    Former Arsenal midfielder Fredrik Ljungberg and ex-Newcastle United striker Michael Chopra, who is of Indian origin, will be among the top names featuring in the draft for the October-December tournament.

    The tournament schedule has not yet been announced.

    A similar process for Indian players was completed last month and the teams are allowed to contract two international players directly and five each from the draft in their squads of 22.

    Former India football captain IM Vijayan feels the likes of Tendulkar are not just cosmetic additions but take keen interest.

    "I have had discussions with him (Tendulkar),'' Vijayan said ahead of the draft. "I've been impressed by his knowledge of football, his ideas about the game, and eagerness to know more about it."

    Tendulkar is a co-owner along with business group PVP ventures while Ganguly co-owns the Kolkata team as part of a consortium that also includes Spanish league team Atletico Madrid.

    Bollywood actors Salman Khan, Ranbir Kapoor and John Abraham are among the other co-owners of teams in Pune, Mumbai and Shillong, respectively.

    The Super League is an additional tournament after a national I-League tournament run by the AIFF which features several foreign players but no big names.

    SOURCE: AP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Why Saudi-Israeli normalisation could be dangerous

    Apart from being disastrous for Palestine, normalising relations with Israel could get Saudi Arabia in real trouble.

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    Gender violence in India: 'Daughters are not a burden'

    With female foeticide still widespread, one woman tells her story of being mutilated for giving birth to her daughters.

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    What is Mohammed bin Salman's next move?

    There are reports Saudi Arabia is demanding money from the senior officials it recently arrested.