BENGALURU GETS A NEW FOOTBALL CLUB - THE INDIAN LEAGUE

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Wednesday, 4 November 2015

BENGALURU GETS A NEW FOOTBALL CLUB

Soon the football fans of Bengaluru will have another football club to cheer for. Ozone Group, who are the Principal Sponsors of ISL franchisee Chennaiyin FC, have launched their own football Club and named it Ozone FC.

The newly formed club was launched today at Bengaluru Football Stadium and will have UEFA 'A' Licence holder Burt Zuurman as the Head Coach as well as Technical Director. The club will compete in Bengaluru District Football Association Super Division League, which is slated to begin later this month.

Ozone Group has already been into football since 2011 and have two academies, one in Bengaluru and one in Hosur, in association with KNVB, the Dutch FA. Their U17 team competed in a recently concluded Administrators Cup, help in Chandigarh.

Ozone Group Chairman and Managing Director, S. Vasudevan outlined his plans for the club and said, "We are planning to get into I-League by 2017. We will ensure that Ozone FC wins laurels and earn glory for Bengaluru."

As, no other teams can get into I-League via corporate entry for at least next two years due to AIFF's contractual obligations with Bengaluru FC, the only way for Ozone FC to qualify for I-League would be by winning 2nd Division League. But with its current format, it may be a difficult nut to crack, as only the champions of the league gets qualification to I-League.

But the biggest challenge for the club would be to garner fan support and will be up against Bengaluru FC, former I-League Champions and 2014 Federation Cup Winners. The JSW Owned club, which is regarded as one of the most professional football club in the country, has put in huge efforts to establish a loyal fan support and would be difficult for the new club to emulate.

The one possible obstacle that the club can face in attracting fan support would be its name. The Club is named after the company and not after the city, which may prove detrimental in garnering fans. In the past too clubs like Mahindra United and JCT failed to get much fan following,despite good performances and winning championships. Bharat FC, who disbanded after only one season in top division, also faced the same problem.

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