Chairperson and founder of Football Sports Development Limited and Reliance Foundation, Mrs Nita Ambani, joined Premier League Chief Executive Richard Masters today at the Premier League-ISL Next Generation Mumbai Cup to sign a new agreement that will see the Hero ISL and Premier League continue to work together to share knowledge and expertise in all areas of the elite game including governance, talent development, commercial growth, administration and wider community development.
The partnership between the two leagues began six years ago and this new agreement will allow the leagues to continue working together to enhance the coaching, refereeing and football development in India.
Speaking at the Next Generation Mumbai Cup was Mrs. Nita Ambani, whose Reliance Foundation Young Champs Under 15 sides is one of the teams taking part in the week-long event.
Mrs. Ambani said “The Indian Super League is now forging into next step of our partnership with Premier League. The association over the last six years have been very satisfying for the work we have done in developing Indian football. We would like the two Leagues to further strengthen the tie through the renewed Premier League-ISL partnership to work on youth development, coaching and refereeing aspects.”
The Next Generation Mumbai Cup has seen three Premier League Under 14 sides – Chelsea FC, Manchester United FC and Southampton FC – travel to Mumbai to compete against Under 15 players from Bengaluru FC, FC Goa and Reliance Foundation Young Champs. The tournament not only gives the academy players new experiences on the pitch, with the difference in the weather and playing style, but also off of it, with the opportunity to visit local schools and communities to understand more about different cultures.
Not only that, but the Premier League coaches from the three attending clubs have been working alongside staff from PGMOL who look after match officials, to help enhance the skills of coaches and referees in Mumbai who can take their learnings into the local community to develop grassroots football.
Richard Masters, Chief Executive, Premier League said: “We are extremely pleased to reaffirm our long-term commitment to developing football in India by signing a new Mutual Cooperation Agreement. Over the past six years, and in partnership with the Hero ISL, we have supported football coaching and development, as well as other areas of the elite side of the game including infrastructure and finance. This new agreement brings with it a new focus, this time on the development of youth football, so we look forward to working in collaboration with our Indian counterparts to enhance this area of the game.”
The Next Generation Mumbai Cup highlights the commitment from the Premier League to work alongside other football bodies to help assist them in a number of business and delivery areas – including finance, academy and youth football and coaching.
The activities around the tournament were also further enhanced by the UK Sports Alliance, whose conferences and meetings to encourage knowledge sharing amongst different sports were aligned to the Next Generation Mumbai Cup.
Crispin Simon, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for South Asia, UK’s Department of International Trade and British Deputy High Commissioner, Mumbai and West of India said: “I am delighted that the Premier League continue their commitment to India and their partnership with the Indian Super League. The Premier League is an epitome of sporting excellence globally, and their work in India continues to support the rapidly expanding football sector here. The UK Government continues to work with the League to support the growth of the sports economies in both our countries, through the Indian-UK Sports Alliance, which brings together influential individuals in both countries to help drive collaboration.”