“This is an opportunity for football fans to prove that they are passionately involved with the game,” said Chhetri.

Ahead of FIFA World Cup StarPick launches fantasy league along with Sunil Chhetri
Sports Football Wednesday, June 13, 2018 - 15:07

Online fantasy sports platform, StarPick on Wednesday announced the launch of their FIFA World Cup 2018 Fantasy League in Bengaluru, along with their brand ambassador Sunil Chhetri, the captain of the Indian football team.

Speaking to the media during the event, Chhetri said that programmes such as fantasy leagues can help in attracting people to the sport. “This is an opportunity for football fans to prove that they are passionately involved with the game as much as the cricket fans in the country are engaged with the sport,” said Chhetri.

Chhetri led India to the Intercontinental Cup title recently, where they beat Kenya 2-0 in the final, with the skipper netting both the goals.

On being asked whether India will get more support after the win, Chhetri said, “It is not like we never got any support before. If you go and watch an ISL match in Kerala, you will see that they have a jam-packed stadium. It is a similar case in some of the Bengaluru FC matches at the Kanteerava.”

Talking about the team he will be rooting for during the FIFA World Cup, which is starting tomorrow, Chettri said, “When you think of the World Cup, you can’t go beyond Germany, Spain, France and Brazil,”. He went on to add that he would also like to see Argentina and Portugal do well for the sake of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Trigam Mukherjee and Suni Chhetri during the launch of the StarPick football fantasy league ahead of the FIFA world cup

Statistics show that Chhetri shares the second position with Lionel Messi as the second highest active goal scorer in the world with 64 goals, after Cristiano Ronaldo who is the highest with 81 goals.

“Whenever I see these numbers, I feel happy for 5 seconds and then I move on with life,” says Chhetri who went on to say that anyone who follows football knows that he’s nowhere near them. He also said that he’s a huge fan of these players and that it is unfair to make any comparisons with them.

“The only reason that I’m really happy is that I’ve got to score those goals for the country,” said the Indian skipper.

When asked as to when we could see India feature in a FIFA World Cup, Chhetri said that as a captain, his current goal is to get his team to the top 10 teams in Asia.

“Only if we play teams like Australia, Iran, Japan and Saudi, will we know where we stand as a team,” said Chhetri, who added that for these teams to even agree to come and play with India, we’ll have to feature in the top 10 in Asia.

Speaking about football’s showpiece event and the fantasy sports platform, Trigam Mukherjee, Co-founder and CEO of StarPick said that a fantasy league for football is “slated to be the next hot button gripping the fan base in India”.

“We look forward to driving football conversations as the language that will connect India,” he said.

He added, “At starpick.in, we are redefining the experience for fans to stay connected and engage with various sports and use their skill and knowledge to create exciting competitions.”

What is a fantasy sport? 

Fantasy sport is a popular online game played by sports enthusiasts. It gives gamers a chance to become owners of their own virtual teams by selecting real athletes from major sport leagues worldwide while competing with other virtual team owners online.

The participants use the athlete’s current performance, analysis, statistical data to compete against others virtually. Each virtual team owner is awarded points based on the athletes’ real time performance during an actual live match. These points are tabulated at the end of a season and the winner is decided accordingly.

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