Indian Super League signs deal with English Premier League

The Premier League inks a deal with yet another league in Asia after having decided to work with the Chinese league...
The Indian Super League (ISL) has formed a partnership with the English Premier League. The agreement will allow the ISL to leverage the renowned league's expertise in building a high quality football competition.

The ISL is co-promoted through a joint venture between IMG and Reliance Industries, Star India and supported by All India Football Federation (AIFF). It is set to kick-off in September 2014 and will receive strategic support, advice and assistance from the Premier League to further the development of the league and its clubs.

The English League will also help in establishing club governance, shaping the brand, fan engagement, defining anti-corruption and anti-doping policies for the ISL. 

The Indian Super League in turn, will help the Premier League stage football matches and assist in other business development initiatives in India. This could encourage exchange programmes and partnership building between clubs in the two countries.

This isn't the first time the Premier League have entered into such an alliance as Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the league pointed towards their agreement with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) which was announced in March this year.

“Having earlier this year signed a mutual co-operation agreement with the AFC, we are very pleased to also enter into this partnership with the ISL. This will see both organisations work together and share knowledge in several key areas including player development, refereeing, marketing and promotion," he said.

"We know from our broadcast partner Star India, and our work with the AIFF on our long-established grassroots football project Premier Skills that we run in several locations across India, that the popularity of football, and the Premier League, is growing," he added.

Meanwhile, this sort of venture isn't a first for IMG either as they also own the rights to the Chinese Super League (CSL) which signed a co-operation deal with the Premier League last December.

Nita M. Ambani voiced her support for the deal as well stating, “Partnering with Premier League brings credence to Indian Super League and to our vision of popularizing the sport in India. I am confident that the tie-up will immensely help in nurturing and establishing Indian Super League with good governance and best practices."

"The alliance also presents a great opportunity of partnership and cross promotions between the ISL League Partners and Premier League Clubs," she added.

Uday Shankar, CEO, Star India said, ''The partnership puts belief in our Star's sports philosophy `Believe'. From a game that hobbled about on the fringes of Indian sports, there's promise that this partnership will lift and reinvigorate football.''

AIFF President Praful Patel said, “The AIFF is extremely pleased to be a part of the strategic partnership between the Premier League and the Indian Super League. This is an outstanding opportunity for the Indian Super League to build from the very best in the business when it comes to running a highly successful league."

Patel appeared enthusiastic about the expertise the Premier League would provide adding, "The Premier League is revered around the world and by learning from the practitioners who have made it so successful, the Indian Super League will develop and grow in the right way, ensuring benefits not only for the league itself but also for the wider Indian football ecosystem in the longer term."

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