Indian Super League (ISL), a franchised based football league in India on Wednesday, July 22, added a feather in its cap with its induction into the World Leagues Forum (WLF). With this feat, ISL becomes the first league from South Asia and seventh in Asia to catch a seat at the WLF. The WLF is an organisation of professional football leagues that includes the eminent leagues like Premier League (England), La Liga (Spain) and Bundesliga (Germany).
Formed in 2016, WLF now has members from five continents representing 1,200 clubs across the globe. The forum also works with FIFA aiming to improve professional football, manifest support for national football bodies to share best practices and improve the quality of professional football. FIFA and the WLF arrange conferences and seminars to support emerging football countries.
"It is an honour for ISL to get a seat at the World Leagues Forum table. This recognition from WLF is a testimony to Indian football's rise on the global stage, and the role that ISL is playing in it. In 2014, when we launched ISL, we had a dream to revolutionize football in India. Every year since then, we have consistently risen the bar and given a world-class platform to our young footballing talent. We look forward to working with WLF to further accelerate the growth of this beautiful game across geographies," Nita Ambani, ISL organisers Football Sports Development Limited Founder and Chairperson, said in a statement.
Jerome Perlemuter, General Secretary, World Leagues Forum said, “It is a great pleasure and an honour to welcome the ISL in the professional football family. The ISL has achieved a lot in recent years and is now on a path to becoming a major league in its region. The World Leagues Forum and its member leagues look forward to sharing experiences with the ISL and contribute to its future development.”
The achievement of the ISL is paramount. Starting in 2014, ISL has redefined football in India, putting football on the map again. Over the years, the footballers in India have metamorphosed into professionals. The grandiose football tournament has noted global soccer personas like Italy’s Alessandro Del Piero and France’s Robert Pires. Since its inception, legendary footballers, cricketers and Bollywood celebrities have come out in support of the league.