On April 27th, 2018, the DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai – which hosted a couple of FIFA U17 World Cup matches last year – will host a unique footballing event that aims to once again bring India to the fore of the sport. Arguably two of the greatest football clubs in the world will be competing on Indian turf to steal the spotlight from IPL for one night; Barcelona legends will take on Juventus legends in front of a capacity crowd at the famous Navi Mumbai (Nerul) stadium. We are talking about two teams here who have won an astounding 57 domestic premier league titles and 7 Champions League titles between them.
The game will be broadcast live on both the clubs’ TV channel – and has been organized by MDFA in association with Football Next Foundation and DY Patil Sports Academy. Tickets will range from INR 500 to 1500 and are available on our website.
Kickoff: 7.30 PM
While the Indian football team continues to climb up the rankings (from 132 in 2015, it is now 99), international football in India has picked up in the last few years. The India U17 squad created history for the country last year by being the first ever Indian football team to participate in a FIFA event. The Barcelona Legends vs Juventus Legends game is the perfect trigger and showpiece for Indian football to develop further.
What are LEGENDS?
Those who have played in marquee events like World Cups, European Championships or in over 200 matches for their clubs qualify as “legends”. Each team will send 20 legends each for four days on April 24. The players will also promote the sport among aspiring local kid footballers through coaching clinics and workshops.
Barca Legends: Spain’s Andoni Goicoetxea, Gudjohnsen, Juan Carlos Rodriguez, Jose Edmilson, Dutch Champions League star (now manager) Frank de Boer and Julio Salinas
Juventus Legends: France World Cup and European Championship Winner David Trezeguet (has also played ISL), 2006 Italy World Cup winners Mauro Camoranesi and Gianluca Zambrotta (ISL, too), 1994 Champions League Winner Edgar Davids
This will be the very first time the European footballing giants will compete against each other on Asian soil.
FC Barcelona has been the best footballing club in the world for the last ten years. It has totally won 24 La Liga titles (7 have come in the last ten seasons, with an 8th on the way), 29 Copa Del Rey titles (5 have come in the last ten seasons) and 5 Champions League titles (4 have come since 2005). It currently boasts of the greatest modern-day player in the form of the Argentine superstar, Lionel Messi. Barcelona is in line to win the treble in 2018, too – with one leg already in the semifinals of the Champions League after they defeated Italy side AS Roma in the first leg. In a way, every Barca team in the last decade has been composed of future Legends.
Juventus FC (The Old Lady) has had a stormy last decade, but remain the most successful Italian club in the history of football. It has won a stunning total of 33 Serie A titles – the last 7 consecutive Serie A titles after returning to top-flight football following the match-fixing scandal, with an 8th on the way as we speak. Juventus has won the last 3 consecutive Coppa Italia titles and 2 UEFA Champions League titles – in 1985 and 1996. The current Juventus team lost their first Champions League quarterfinal leg at home to Real Madrid last week, thanks to some Cristiano Ronaldo magic. They also reached the Champions League Final last year, in which they again lost to Real Madrid.
The sultry Mumbai summer, for the first time, awaits these two great teams.