Rene Meulensteen: ISL has found ground globally

Rene Meulensteen said the ISL achieved a global presence and the participation of world class players has helped in building the brand.

Meulensteen said he was impressed with the fan base the Kerala Blasters had and it was something similar to which Manchester United had.   -  H. Vibhu

Rene Meulensteen, Kerala Blasters' new coach said the Indian Super League (ISL) has attracted many youngsters to the game and it was only a matter of time for the Indian players to make their presence felt globally.

"Leagues such as ISL have already found ground globally and Indians have improved their skills and talent with huge exposure on international techniques these tournaments have given them while playing with international players, '' he said during an interaction on Tuesday.

The former Manchester United assistant coach said that the faith imposed on him by the Blasters owners, especially Nimmagadda Prasad and Sachin Tendulkar forced him to accept the coaching offer from the Kerala side.

Meulensteen said that he was following the ISL from the inaugural season and said the presence of world class players, though at the later stages of their career, helped in building the brand of ISL.

The 53-year-old said he was impressed with the fan base the Kerala Blasters had and it was something similar to which Manchester United had and added that he was pleasantly surprised.

The coach said he was satisfied with the players whom the Kerala Blasters picked in the ISL draft. He also welcomed the return of Iain Hume to the side. Calling Hume a hard-working player who can make an impact on the game with this tireless enthusiasm, the coach observed that other players should play around him.

The Dutchman said that in the coming months, the Kerala Blasters will be focusing on building the team's strength and hinted that the team is keen on signing some young foreign players who are capable of surviving the rigours of a long season.

The club's CEO, Varun Tipuraneni said that the side was able to pick some really good players in the draft and it was in tune with the demands of the fans. The club's Technical Director, Tangboi Singto said the outfit would identify talents at grassroots level through football schools and will nurture them to become world class football players.

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