ISL vs I-League: What is better?
This was inevitable. Which one is better? The newly formed Indian Super League or the nearly two decade-old I-League (previously known as the National Football League)
Simply put Indian Men’s national team’s FIFA ranking has gone down (158 now to 120 in 1996) from when the league started (1996-97 season) so it is safe to assume that the I-League was not a resounding success.
So let me point out why I think the ISL will be better:
- A corporate style professionally managed league: The professionalism missing from the erstwhile league meant “business” was conducted in a lackadaisical manner with a mostly honorary management system both from the clubs point of view as well as the organizers. Needless to say this will get better now.
- Spreading the game: In the last two decades baring two occasions the league was only won by clubs from Goa or Kolkata. Leading the geographical interest in the sports limited to small pockets. Now with a more even distribution of franchisees the interest is bound to be more evenly spread throughout the nation.
- Better quality of foreigners: We can imbibe the better practices if we play with the very best. With all due respect to the foreigners who have played or are playing the leagues they were not of the highest quality. Hopefully now our nationals will imbibe the best practices from the better quality players coming through.
- Better revenue: A better packaged league will attract more advertising money which will make it a better proposition to attract the better talent and which will attract more audience which will in turn attract more revenue.
Time will judge the success of the ISL so far it looks promising. It shouldn’t take much to better the I-league anyway. I-League and Indian Super League can either co-exist or merge.