IMG-Reliance sets out roadmap for Indian football
24 Aug 2012
The All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) marketing partner, IMG-Reliance, on Thursday presented its latest plans to transform the game in the country, including an international-standard centre of excellence and the redevelopment of stadiums.
IMG-Reliance’s presentation of the ‘road map for Indian football’ is the latest measure aimed at boosting the development of football in India, with the company currently engaged in a 15-year agreement with the AIFF to improve, popularise and promote the game from the grassroots to the professional level. An IMG-Reliance official told the IANS news agency that an academy will be situated at the Indian Petrochemicals Corporation (IPCL) Sports Complex in Baroda, Gujarat.
“We have four to five grounds inside the IPCL township in Baroda,” the official said. “We have proposed to the AIFF that we can build a centre of excellence there. It will be of international standard and we want to make it the best in the country.” IMG-Reliance will also seek to redevelop a number of stadiums throughout India in order to provide greater options for staging international games. “We have identified some stadiums in India and have plans to refurbish them so that we can host international matches,” the official added. “At present, there are only two to three stadiums that can host international matches in India.”
IMG-Reliance stated that talks are continuing over the formation of an Indian Premier League-style football tournament involving city-based teams run by corporate franchises – a competition that would run separately from the domestic I-League. “Today we made a presentation on the franchise based football tournament,” the official said. “We are happy with the response from the clubs and hopefully we can make a change to Indian football.”