India is hoping to boost the popularity of football by launching a new league that will feature veteran players like Robert Pires and Fabio Cannavaro.
A six-team league modeled in part by cricket's successful Indian Premier League is set to begin next month, and will also feature players like former Liverpool forward Robbie Fowler and Argentina's Hernan Crespo alongside local talent.
The league is organized by Celebrity Management Group, which has signed a 30-year agreement with the Kolkata-based Indian Football Association to organize the event.
''We have planned a tournament that is tailor-made for Indian fans,'' Bhaswar Goswami, executive director of CMG told The Associated Press by telephone. ''Indians are crazy about big names and we will give them the opportunity to see top stars in action.''
The inaugural tournament will be played in the eastern state of West Bengal from Feb. 25 to April 8. Organizers hope the competition will attract fans who currently follow European cl...