After AirAsia entry, QPR-owner Tony Fernandes eyes the I-League

Fernandes not only wants QPR to play local matches in India but he has also initiated discussions with owners of Kochi-based football club- Eagles FC -- for joining hands with the local club.

FP Sports July 02, 2013 11:46:04 IST
After AirAsia entry, QPR-owner Tony Fernandes eyes the I-League

Air Asia chief Tony Fernandes doesn't just want to rule the skies in India, he also wants to rule the football fields. According to a report in the Business Standard, Fernandes has plans to bring international football teams to India, including his team - Queens Park Rangers - to participate in various football leagues in India.

Fernandes holds a 65 percent stake in Queens Park Rangers, relegated from the English Premier League to the Championship last season. Lakshmi Mittal, chairman of ArcelorMittal, holds about 33 percent stake . The Malaysian entrepreneur, who also owns the Caterham F1 motorsport team, has reportedly visited football stadiums in cities such as Kolkata, Chennai and Kochi to check the conditions and availability of stadiums.

Fernandes not only wants QPR to play local matches in India but he has also initiated discussions with owners of Kochi-based football club- Eagles FC -- to join hands with the local club.

After AirAsia entry QPRowner Tony Fernandes eyes the ILeague

Fernandes is launching his AirAsia airline in India. Reuters

Without disclosing anything more, Shafi Mather, director of the Kochi club told Business Standard," The talks are at a very early stage."

Even though QPR were relegated, they do have some high-quality players in the squad -- including highly-rated Brazilian international goalkeeper Julio Cesar, who was part of the team that lifted the 2013 Confederations Cup on Sunday.

According to the Business Standard report, Fernandes also wants to get Queens Park Rangers to participate in football league, I-League, organised by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).

A statement from AIFF said, "Queens Park has given a tentative proposal to participate in the I-League from 2014-15 onwards after fulfilling all the criteria and standards as required."

Read the full Business Standard report here

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