Mahendra Singh Dhoni Adds Glamour Touch to ISL But Will India Football Score Goals?

Mahendra Singh Dhoni will co-own Indian Super League team Chennaiyin FC. Dhoni joins Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and Virat Kohli as celebrity cricketers who will be part of this inaugural football championship.

updated: October 07, 2014 13:59 IST
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Dhoni ISL Chennai
Cricket, Bikes and now Football? MS Dhoni becomes co-owner of ISL's Chennaiyin FC.


Not many are sure how much the Indian Super League will transform the pock-marked face of India's national football, but if the game is looking for some quality inspiration and some much-needed Television Rating Points, the IPL-styled league is getting some good advertisement. Glamour and celebrity factors don't translate into goals but if the ISL is looking for a solid kickstart, India's top cricketers have given it a terrific image. The league starts on Sunday, October 12. (Read: Dhoni Wants Football Revolution in India With ISL)

Indian football is at its lowest ebb. It has made all the wrong news in recent weeks. The government initially refused to bear the cost of the team for the Asian Games. Expectedly, India failed to cross the league stage at Incheon. On Monday, India lost to Palestine in a friendly and the national coach Wim Koevermans, a former Dutch international, ended his football honeymoon with a country which is currently ranked 158. India continue to slip in the rankings and could very soon touch its worst rating - 169.

Football in India is restricted to the club teams. Still struggling to adopt professionalism, Indian football, till recently, was dominated by the Big Three of Kolkata - Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and Mohammedan Sporting. As new teams like Bengaluru FC and Pune FC, with better method and attitude, emerge, Kolkata teams are being found out. Bagan and East Bengal even have their bank accounts frozen after their officials were caught for involvement in chit fund scams.

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