Baggies strengthen ties with clubs in India
West Bromwich Albion garnered plaudits from Indian Super League delegates after a triumphant open day for the visitors from India's booming new football industry.
Albion turned on the charm in a day-long briefing which gave 30 representatives an inside look at the Club's Barclays Premier League operation.
The Baggies eagerly seized the chance to meet with the ISL leaders as it continues to forge links with the sub continent’s burgeoning football community.
The delegation watched video presentations about the Club’s history and its India initiatives before touring the stadium and the EPPP Academy centre close by.
The Academy programme was of particular interest to the ISL delegates as they look to develop a talent stream which can one day feed into their first teams.
“We were extremely impressed with the focus West Bromwich Albion has towards the future while not forgetting their long history,” said Mumbai City Chief Executive Indranil Das Blah.
“Be it the Club’s digital engagement, the elite coaching centre or the community programme, everything we saw during our trip to the Club left us inspired.
“We wish Albion all the very best and look forward to welcoming them to the Indian market in the not-too-distant future.”
Mumbai City's ringing endorsement was echoed by several more communiques received from other ISL representatives.
Albion’s Sales and Marketing Director, Adrian Wright, added: “It was a great opportunity for the club to showcase its Premier League operation to influential representatives from the ISL.
“The ISL delegates were hugely impressed by what they saw and many have already been in touch to discuss how we are able to help them develop football in India.
“The club has a long-term plan in India and we hope to establish strong relationships with the ISL and its member clubs.
“We recognise that the ISL has huge potential in so many areas – whether it be by expanding our own audience or identifying talent for the future.”
In a series of visits to Delhi and Mumbai Albion have established a strong relationship with India Football Partners, Youth Football International.
The collaboration has overseen the development of a Player Scholarship Scheme, and helped to further enhance a grass roots youth league and coaching structure, which utilises football’s universal appeal to reach out to some of the nation’s poorest communities.
An Albion Mumbai Supporters group has even emerged on Facebook while the Barclays Premier League club will keep up the momentum of this connect project with further visits to India this year.