Indian Super League has completely transformed the landscape of Indian football, promoting grassroots talent while offering lucrative deals to world-renowned players to come and ply their trade in the subcontinent.
And the major reason for such increased developments has been the involvements of European footballing giants who have identified the potential and pool of talent India possess.
In this article, we thus look at top 5 partnerships between European clubs and ISL franchises over its six years history.
Borussia Dortmund-Hyderabad FC (2020)
Indian Super League side Hyderabad FC announced a two-year club partnership with German Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund, which will have an option to extend for additional years with an extended scope until 2025.
Hyderabad FC becomes the official ‘Club Partner’ of Dortmund in India, the German football giant’s fourth partnerships, which includes the likes of Thai Premier League Club Buriram United, Australia’s NPL Club Marconi FC and Iwate Grulla Morioka in Japan.Hyderabad FC, which was previously based out of Pune and known as Pune City, had Fiorentina owning around 15 per cent stake in the team.
RB Leipzig- FC Goa (2020)
Manchester City-Mumbai City (2019)
City Football Group (CFG)’s investment in ISL side Mumbai City FC in 2019 is the finest example why Indian football’s market can do wonders if marketed well.
With assistance from the Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL), Mumbai City FC sold 65% shares to the Manchester City FC owners. The deal has shown progress with CFG heavily investing in the Mumbai City FC roster for the 2020-21 season.
They have signed up big Indian Super League names like Hugo Boumous, Ahmed Jahouh and Mandar Rao Dessai. The Islanders are also in pursuit of Sydney FC striker Adam Le Fondre. Other than an extraterrestrial budget for the first team, CFG is also expected to open academies in Mumbai.
Bengaluru-Rangers FC (2019)
In 2019, ISL side (previously I-League) Bengaluru FC also share a technical partnership with Rangers FC.
The two clubs signed a two-year deal with an option to extend on mutual agreement. This collaboration will present a number of football and commercial opportunities for both clubs.
The exchange will also see Rangers Academy travel to India, have Rangers Soccer Schools hold training camps in Bengaluru and bring tour groups to Glasgow for a unique experience with the Rangers. A Rangers Legends team will also be making their way to India as part of the deal.