The boom in football in India has spurred foreign leagues more than ever. What is the investment from abroad in Indian football?
India, where the passion for football has fallen asleep, has risen stronger than ever. Indian football’s achievements are increasingly impressive in regional tournaments. In addition, India has a huge audience, which can be very profitable if properly exploited.
First, Fifa U-17 World Cup 2017 broke the previous attendance record with more than 1.3 million spectators. The global media attention for the event helped develop sports infrastructure, improve staffing, and transfer knowledge to government organizations and businesses for organizing major soccer events. India won the right to host Fifa U-17 Women’s World Cup tournament in 2020.
Second, Indian football has had milestones, which changed the long way in 2013. The India Super League was born and led the new football trend. This big football event attracts about 155 million followers throughout the country. This is the fifth-largest football tournament in the world in terms of average attendance.
The growing popularity of football in India has attracted the attention of football leagues and clubs worldwide. In 2016, La Liga has entered India footbal with their base. The La Liga football school quickly opened up in India. This has provided access to about 10,000 children through 35 soccer schools in 14 cities across eight states.
Market research firm GFK recently did a study for La Liga in China, India and Indonesia. They show that football is India’s second most favorite sport after hockey.
It can be seen that India is making efforts at three main levels to shape its football system, including: Grassroots development, professional league and national team.
Furthermore, foreign clubs are partnering with local partners like ISL and I-League clubs to demonstrate their commitment to Indian football.
The development of football has been clearly recorded in India. With the government’s policy and the large number of fans, this is also a potential market.