The fresh HeroISL, India's exclusive soccer league is going to take off from October 12th, and while the nation gear up for this competition, here is the basics you should know about it.
Taking Indian soccer out of sleep
The HeroISL was set up in 2013 after noticing that many Indians are passionate about football, but unfortunately, have no national soccer league with International prestige to follow. The HeroISL aims to turn the table.
It will consist of 8 franchise teams, owned from people and companies across the country. The competition will start in October and end in December.
The eight teams that will compete in this competition are:
· Atletico de Kolkata, trained by Antonio Lopez Habas, with Spain as the foreign draft.
· Chennai Titans, assisted by Marco Materazzi with Italy as the foreign draft.
· Delhi Dynamos FC, coached by Harm van Veldhoven with Netherlands as the foreign draft.
· FC Goa, coached by, Zico with Brazil as the foreign draft.
· Kerala Blasters FC, coached by David James with England as the foreign draft.
· Mumbai City FC, assisted by Peter Reid with England as the foreign draft.
· North East United FC, practiced by Ricki Herbert with New Zealand as the foreign draft.
· FC Pune City, coached by Franco Colomba with Italy as the foreign draft.
While building their teams, each outfit will have to aqcuire:
· At least seven foreigners, out of which two will be from the squad and 5 will be from the foreign player draft;
· One marquee player, which in the words of AIFF is "A foreign recruit who has represented his country in any of the continental championships like the European Championship, Copa America, African Nations Cup, Asian Cup, or FIFA World Cup will be called a star player;" and
· 14 Indian domestic players, four of which have to be local players from the city the club belongs to.
High-Profile Ownership in the HeroISL
The league is owned by Reliance Industries Ltd, Star India Pvt. Ltd. and IMG Worldwide Inc. It would be televisedbroadcasted only on STAR Sports and will have Hero MotoCorp as the cup; thus the name Hero Indian Super League. From Bollywood, we have John Abraham who co-owns the outfit North East United FC, Ranbir Kapoor who co-owns the Mumbai City FC team, Abhishek Bachchan who co-owns Chennaiyin FC outfit, Salman Khan who co-owns the FC Pune City squad, and Varun Dhawan who is the brand ambassador of the FC Goa team. From the field of Indian Cricket, Sachin Tendulkar is the co-owner of the Kerala Blasters FC outfit and Sourav Ganguly is the co-owner of the Atletico de Kolkata squad.
Every year, the competition would be played between October and December. Each outfit will play against all other squads twice on a home-and-away basis. The top 4 teams will be eligible for the finals.
Financing the outfit
Squad owners' investments in the Indian Super League are worth having a look. Different teams have financed a lot to acquire foreign players:
Goa: 430.000 USD
Chennai Titans: 380.000 USD
Atletico de Kolkata: 350.000 USD
Mumbai City: 330.000 USD
Kerala Blasters: 315.000 USD
Pune City: 280.000 USD
Delhi Dynamos: 260.000 USD
North East United: 260.000 USD
With this kind of money and international attention towards the ISL, this is surely a league you would not want to miss! Possibly a kickstart to bring football in Hindustan to a higher level!
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