THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

A review of the India Panel at the Soccerex European Forum

India Panel at the Soccerex European Forum

The Soccerex European Forum took place at Manchester last week with a special India Panel called “India: Awakening Football’s Sleeping Giant”.

The panel moderated by Libero Sports India Managing Director Sukhvinder Singh witnessed four panelists namely Vivek Narayan (Director Sports, Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Government of India), Rajpal Singh (Director Sports & Youth Affairs, FICCI), Kunal Dua (Head of Sports Marketing, Panasonic India) and Shirish Kulkarni (Executive Director, DSK Group & Owner of DSK Shivajians FC) talking about Indian football in front of the football world which gathered at the Manchester Central Convention Complex.

India had been regularly on the agenda for Soccerex, the leading global football convention, for the last decade and the football business was keen to get an update of the latest status quo of the beautiful game in India.

The India Panel was held at the so-called “Studio 2” with various people from the football business including a 25-member strong Indian delegation [+ read more] attending the one and half hour long panel.

The panelists gave the audience a status update on the current situation of football in India and the importance of the various stakeholders involved in the game. Rajpal Singh highlighted the importance to build a bridge between the Government Authorities and the federations to take the game forward.

Vivek Narayan also stressed that Indian football would “get a major boost”, if FIFA would award the hosting rights for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup to us. Narayan said that the Government of India had received a new draft proposal from FIFA for the U-17 finals and that the world-governing body is keen to host the tournament in India. But he did also mention that certain regulations would need to be changed to apply to the guidelines of FIFA.

Panasonic India’s Head of Sports Marketing Kunal Dua told Indian football should make use of Bollywood and Cricket stars to market the game in India, while Shirish Kulkarni reported his about his experiences of running a club in India and playing in the 2nd Division I-League.

The India Panel was an interesting one highlighting the challenges in the country and giving the audience an impression about the current situation in India.

View exclusive pictures of the Indian Panel and the visit to the Etihad Stadium at