Teams splash the cash for new Premier League Soccer
BIG name football stars are heading to India for a new football initiative modeled on the lucrative Cricket Indian Premier League.
Italian World Cup winner Fabio Cannavaro, Argetinian Hernan Crespo and former Kop favourite Robbie Fowler are just few of the names who have signed up to the new Premier League Soccer.
It has been put together by Celebrity Management Group (CMG) and the Indian Football Association who have modeled the tournament on the popular cricket tournament the Indian Premier League in the hope it will increase enthusiasm for the game across the country.
Bhaswar Goswami, Executive Director of CMG, said: “When you look at the biggest European Clubs, one finds that a large number of these clubs grew to become billion dollar enterprises, which is due to the mechanics of their administrative and commercial functioning. Like many people, I asked myself why India couldn’t have the same with football. And the idea was born.
“This has been a dream for all of us at CMG. We have visualized it for years now. For the Indian Football Association it means taking the game of football to a whole new level. Most importantly it means we finally revive the game of football in India and give it the boost it needs.”
The league will comprise five teams from Kolkata, Siliguri, Durgapur, Howrah and Barasat, with a number of high profile players auctioned and placed in the individual teams.
Former Italian defender Fabio Cannavaro was bought by Siliguri for $830,000, while former Arsenal Midfielder Robert Pires was snapped up by Howrah for $800,000.
Other players to go under the hammer included former England striker Robbie Fowler who was bought for $530,000 and will team up with Englishman Peter Reid as coach for Kolkata.
J.J.Okocha, best know for his exploits at Bolton Wanderers and later Hull City, was sold for $550,000 to Durgapur, while former Chelsea star Herman Crespo topped the auction at $840,000 and will play for Barasat.
The League is expected to kick off in early March.