The Punjab based premier football club Minerva Punjab will be the Apollo-Minerva Punjab for the next five years. The I-League club has inked a multiple season deal with Mohali based I-League club.
This is the first I-League tie-up for the Indian multi-national tyre brand that has also been supporting English clubs like Crystal Palace and Manchester United. Grassroots football promotion is one major common goal that has got Apollo closer to Minerva Punjab, which has seen four of its junior players – Mohd Shahjahan, Nongdamba Naorem, Anwar Ali and Jeakson Singh – to the India under-17 squad.
“The Apollo Tyres’ support to Minerva Punjab is also a support to the grassroots football development. Minerva Punjab primarily focuses on the junior and grassroots development of sports and football in particular. The Apollo Tyres association with our brand also signifies their support to grassroots level sports in the country,” Rahul Anand, Chief Business Officer, Minerva Punjab told insidesport.co.
The Punjab-based club has made their I-League debut only a season ago with a young team. The club has successfully defended their AIFF Youth League-Nike Premier Cup title for the 2015 & 2016 season. The feat epitomizes the youth development philosophy of Minerva Punjab FC, who have contributed over 30 players to different age-groups National Team.
Apollo while hailing its latest sponsorship commitment has also valued MPFC’s commitment for sports promotion. “It would be our pleasure to be associated with Minerva Punjab FC and contribute to Indian sports, especially at the grassroots level of football, where MPFC is already doing a fantastic job. This will also help us connect and engage with the fans of this club in the northern part of the country,” Satish Sharma, Apollo Tyers’ President, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa (APMEA), said.
Elaborating on the partnership, Ranjit Bajaj, Owner & CEO, Minerva Punjab FC said, “Minerva Punjab FC is a brand new team of youngsters looking to make their presence felt in the top footballing contests of India. It gives us immense pleasure to be able to partner with the country’s leading tyre maker Apollo Tyres and bring them on board as our title sponsors. They have already been associated with some of the biggest clubs in world football, and we are delighted by this opportunity and look forward to a great season together,” said Minverva Punjab CEO Ranjit Bajaj.
Apollo is currently the Global Tyre Partner for English Premier League clubs, Manchester United and Crystal Palace, in addition to its association with Borussia Monchengladbach in the German Bundesliga. The brand has also recently announced its association with ISL club Chennaiyin FC as their principal sponsor
Cleartrip, Fortis healthcare and Gatorade are the other commercial associates of Apollo Punjab Minerva FC.