Lothar Matthaus: I like the style of football in India
The Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) recently had the opportunity to host German football legend Lothar Matthaus, who visited India for three days as part of the Bundesliga Legends tour. Matthaus was in attendance as a special guest for Tuesday’s encounter between Jamshedpur FC and Kerala Blasters FC, followed by Thursday’s match between Mumbai City FC and Chennaiyin FC.
During his time in Mumbai, indiansuperleague.com caught up with the former World Cup-winning German captain for an exclusive interview.
Matthaus began by sharing his experience in Kochi and said,"Now, I was watching this one match on Tuesday in Kochi and I think they're organized very well. They have good entertainment before and after the game. I like the style of football and sure, in this way, you will improve week by week, year by year and soon the national team will be able to profit from the quality of the Hero ISL."
Matthaus also expressed his love for India and the country's passion for football. "I was very happy to be here. It's not my first time here in India, I came here for the first time eight years ago before the World Cup in South Africa. I had a FIFA tour representing the World Cup with Coca Cola. Then one year ago, I was in New Delhi, and now, I am in Mumbai and I like it very much. The people are very friendly. They gave me great support. There is also a lot of interest in football and this makes me very happy. Not only for the Indian Football, but they follow the German Bundesliga as well. It is great for us in Germany to have fans in India," he said.
It has been more than a decade since the German great hung up his boots, but he reaffirmed that he is still closely associated with the beautiful game. "I am still close to football. I work in a TV station and every week, I am in a stadium watching a match live. I feel the atmosphere and I am really happy for the players who have beautiful stadiums. They get big support from the fans and I am still a part of German football,” he said proudly.
Football has undergone a sea of change in the past decade and Matthaus underlined some of the positive aspects of the transformation. "Many things, the world changed too! I think the facilities, the infrastructure and the speed of football. The coaches have more qualities and they go more into details. Young players are coming earlier into professional football than before and what is good for the players is that they get higher salaries than twenty years ago," he concluded.