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Key topics which were discussed included the tremendous potential for football to flourish in India, the importance of India hosting the 2017 U-17 FIFA World...

The FICCI – Libero Sports India Indian delegation hosted a successful panel discussion entitled “Awakening Football’s Sleeping Giant,” on day two of the Soccerex European Forum in Manchester, UK. 100+ people attentively listened to the panel which represented the important sectors of the industry including government, corporate, industry policy, club ownership and agency. Members of the panel included Vivek Narayan (Director Sports - Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports), Rajpal Singh (Director Sports and Youth Affairs – FICCI), Shirish Kulkarni (Executive Director – DSK Group) and was moderated by Sukhvinder Singh (Managing Director – Libero Sports India).

Key topics which were discussed during the one and a half hour session included the tremendous potential for football to flourish in India, the importance of India hosting the 2017 U-17 FIFA World, human resource opportunities within the Indian football landscape and existing challenges for the development of the sport. 

Government of India Sports Director Vivek Narayan impressed the audience sharing the Indian government’s plans to set up more than 700 schools at the district level with state of the art infrastructure and world class sports staff.  He also reiterated the government’s support of India’s bid to host the 2017 U-17 FIFA World Cup. FICCI Sports Head Rajpal Singh focused on importance of his organization’s role as the interface between government and industry and the need to uncover India’s “hidden football talent” through knowledge and strategic partnerships.

Panasonic Sports Marketing Head Kunal Dua discussed the reason behind his organization’s choice to invest in Indian football and the type of money can’t buy experiences corporate houses are looking for to ensure more investment from their side. Finally, DSK Group Executive Director Shirish Kulkarni focused on his long term plans to build a world class Academy and football club in his 250 acre Pune based residential township and the impetus behind DSK Group’s commitment to Indian football. 

The session was attended by delegates representing many different global organizations including top Premiership Clubs Manchester City Football Club and Liverpool Football Club. Also during the session, FICCI and Libero Sports released their 4th knowledge report entitled, “The Rising Billion.”

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