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Virat Kohli comes on board FC Goa as co-owner

FC Goa coach Zico, marquee player Robert Pires, Neeta Ambani, founding chairperson, Football Sports Development, cricketer and co-owner of FC Goa Virat Kohali, actor Varun Dhawan and owner of the team Venugopal Dhoot unveiling the team t-shirt in Mumbai

The FC Goa franchise of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) announced Team India vice captain Virat Kohli as its fourth co-owner at an event held on Tuesday.

According to  sources, the association has been worked out in a way that the cricketer has minority stake in the franchise. The shareholding is part monetary investment and part sweat equity (on non-monetary effort). Industry estimates peg the Goa franchise cost at Rs 12 crore (a year). This means Kohli’s investment in the team would be under Rs 1 crore.

Kohli is the first active cricketer to invest in a football team in the ISL. Veterans Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar are co-owners for the Kolkata and Kochi teams in the ISL.

“This association has two sides to it for me. On the one hand, I am excited about football as a sport. It is my second favourite sport after cricket and when I realised there is an opportunity to be associated with the FC Goa team, I took it up. It is also a business venture of sorts for me. Let us face it, cricket will not last forever and I felt this was a good business opportunity,” said Kohli while speaking at the launch.

FC Goa also announced its principal sponsor as Videocon D2H and kit partner as Adidas. Videocon D2H would be launching a slew of marketing activities for the FC Goa team’s campaign in the inaugural season of the ISL. One of the initiatives taken by the Videcon Group is to launch a new channel on its direct-to-home platform dedicated to the FC Goa team.

The feed of the channel would go live on October 10 and would have content centred around the team, its players and more.

The club has signed on Brazilian legend and three-time World Cupper Arthur Antunes Coimbra, fondly known as “Zico” as its coach. Zico has begun putting the FC Goa players through the motions at team training sessions and is gearing for the first season of the ISL.

FC Goa also introduced former France and Arsenal star Robert Pires as its marquee player. FC Goa’s first game in the tournament would be against Chennaiyin FC at their home ground on October 16.

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