Soccerex: International Confusion about Indian football

Day one of the Soccerex European Forum here in Manchester was as always good then one meets old friends in football and makes new contacts. One gets to know what's happening in the industry and the hot topics of the moment. Interestingly everyone seems to be very interested about Indian football - the opportunities and challenges that the 'emerging market' offers.

But there are misunderstandings and misconceptions about India and its football. Many see the Indian economy its healthy growth rate and the rise of the new middle class, a group with leisure money to spend; but often the difficulties and challenges are forgotten.

One of the biggest talking point is the IPL-style Premier League Soccer in West Bengal, which for different people in the industry has different meanings, then the international media has covered it extensively but has not always gotten the key facts right or transported the information needed to understand it properly.

Many think the PLS is a new national league, some a new Indian Pro League, some call it a rebel league others meanwhile know that it is a regional (state) league in the football crazy state of West Bengal. Explaining over and over again what the PLS is, why it has been delayed and what it could mean for Indian football vis-a-vis to the I-League and the development of football in India isn't always easy.

Here my write-up on the upcoming panel this morning about: Soccerex: Emerging Markets Panel on India .

Loads to talk about, more later in the day and over the coming days...

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