AIFF signs deal with Nike

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> All India Football Federation (AIFF) has signed a seven-year deal with Nike.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:38 IST
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New Delhi:

Just do it! The new mantra for Indian football. Nike supplies the kit for the Indian cricket team and now they will do the same for the footballers as well. All India Football Federation (AIFF) has signed a seven-year deal and Nike will outfit as many as nine national teams which includes the women and juniors. Grassroots development In addition, they will also focus on grassroots development. One such initiative will be a junior tournament next month which will feature the team from Manchester United. "We continue to look at sports and develop them. Football is one of our key areas. "While we will continue our commitments to cricket, we shall also develop football in the country, our commitments are not superficial," said Sanjay Mehra, General Manager, Nike India. It's a great boost for Indian football which last year signed a Rs 275 crore deal with Zee Sports for TV rights. That deal brought in the much-needed television exposure for the national side and for domestic events like the National Football League. India may be ranked 118 in the world right now and they lost 6-0 to Japan in an Asian qualifier last week. Ringing cash registers But the good news is that the cash is overflowing even if the talent isn't. How much money the deal with Nike has fetched however is something under wraps right now. "All of you will be asking me one question, how much money did we get? I am not in a position to answer that now, but we will do it in due course," said Priya Ranjan Dasmunshi, President, AIFF. Nike's deal with AIFF is not as lucrative as the one with BCCI, but the secret of the cricket board's mega bucks deal has been Indian team's performance on the field. And for money to rain in to football, AIFF is hoping that the Indian team too raises its level of performance.

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