The second edition of Indian Super League (ISL) is starting in a little more than a month and the excitement is rising slowly as the franchises are busy bolstering their attacks ahead of the star-studded league that took Indian football to a new height last year.
With the emergence of ISL, the future of I-League looks bleak, but All India Football Federation (AIFF) general secretary Kushal Das had opined earlier this week that ISL and I-League would be merged in three years.
The Indian skipper and Mumbai City FC recruit, Sunil Chhetri, is of the opinion that merging these two leagues would do wonders for the sport in the country. In that case, 16-18 teams would be battling it out for one league throughout the year and that appears to be a great idea to uplift the quality of Indian football.
"I would love to have just one league in the country.... where there will be 16-18 teams and which goes on for 11 months and there will be a format of Federation Cup like the FA Cup in England," Chhetri said in an interview to IANS at the launch of Mumbai City FC's jersey.
"I just hope things work, like I-League, ISL and the Federation and AIFF sit together and chalk it out. It would be great to have that for Indian football," he added.
However, Chhetri is quite excited about playing for Mumbai City FC in the second edition of ISL and is looking forward to play under and alongside Mumbai's coach-cum-player Nicolas Anelka. The Mumbai-based franchise finished second last in the first season of the pompous league (ISL) and he is hopeful that they would do better this year.
"What happened last year does not hold a lot of importance this year. We have a great team, a great personality like Nicolas Anelka who is player-cum-coach. It's just we have to start training and give our best.
"There's so much to learn from Anelka. I can't imagine him as my coach and teammate now. It can't get better than this. He is a legend here. Thanks to ISL that I am getting an opportunity to get to play with him," Chhetri said.