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RB Leipzig CEO Oliver Mintzlaff on FC Goa partnership: 'You can become a partner without buying shares'

9:03 AM EST 11/12/20
Oliver Mintzlaff RB Leipzig FC Goa
The German has hinted at RB Leipzig first team's visit to India in the next three years...

FC Goa and Red Bull Leipzig on Thursday announced a strategic partnership between the two clubs for a period of three years.

Oliver Mintzlaff, who is the Head of Global Soccer at Red Bull and CEO at RB Leipzig, explained the factors that made the Goan Indian Super League (ISL) club the perfect fit to be involved with for this kind of a deal. 

"The process took quite a lot of time as we were in talks since 2018. We were aware that we needed to engage ourselves internationally because the Bundesliga takes place internationally. So we made many rounds (of conversations) and landed with FC Goa, as the two clubs have the same vision and goals with a similar understanding of football. Our talks and conversations over the years led to the fact that we are here today," he said.

With regard to potentially turning the partnership into further investment, he added, "Of course, the Indian market is interesting to us and with this early entry there are not many European clubs that deal with Indian markets at such an extensive level. We want to leave footsteps beyond just one or two football camps. So the grassroots initiatives are the first steps and the cooperation with FC Goa may lead to more opportunities than the online and real camps."

Mintzlaff was quizzed whether FC Goa's logo will see any change, he had nothing to share on that front and continued, "If you're asking about buying shares (at FC Goa), you can become a partner without buying shares."

The partnership will involve opportunities for young Indian talents to train and hone their skills at the German club's facilities and in future, Leipzig is expected to offer support with on-site training that will involve the exchange of know-how regarding youth development. 

"What we (Leipzig) receive is a certain market opening and research into a very interesting market. We think that the topic of brand awareness is important to us. Digital reach is very important to our club and we want to transport it through the FC Goa platform," the German club's CEO confirmed.

"We hope to get a better understanding of football in India through the camps that we execute. If we fly to India in phase two, we will integrate our scouting department and new cooperations can be set up to get some players to Germany but this is something that we cannot plan in advance."

Would see an Indian player in the Bundesliga or one from the Bundesliga plying his trade in India, possibly with FC Goa?

"If you continue to be more successful, part and parcel of it are that you incorporate all bits of the club. Probably in the next three years, we will plan a trip to India. After the digital reach, we assure that we can travel to India with the entire first team. When it will happen and to what extent, it is too early to say. If you ask me in a year's time, I could tell you more about that," Mintzlaff concluded.