New Delhi: All set to take Indian football by storm, bids for the prospective Indian Super League franchises would come under intense scrutiny of a high-profile seven-member panel which will evaluate the documents till Saturday evening before a formal announcement on Sunday.
According to sources, the panel - comprising eminent personalities from various fields, including professions such as sports, law, finance and corporate governance experts - will meet in Mumbai this evening.
"A high-profile seven-member panel will meet on Friday evening to open and evaluate the second and final set of bid documents," the source told PTI.
"The process will get over by Saturday evening and Indian Super League promoters, IMG Reliance officials are expected to make announcement about the eight winners on Sunday," he added.
Cricket legends, Bollywood stars and a host of corporates are in the fray to own teams. The nine cities in the reckoning are Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Goa, Guwahati, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune, out of which eight will be shortlisted.
Organised by IMG Reliance in association with Star India, the league has the backing of All India Football Federation (AIFF), and is likely to see big names such as ex-Manchester United striker Dwight Yorke, former Argentina forward Hernan Crespo and England's Michael Owen.
PTI has learnt that bidders include "two Indian cricket legends, five Bollywood celebrities, three I-League clubs and five corporate entities".
This is being seen as an unrivalled football championship in the country once called 'sleeping giant' by FIFA president Sepp Blatter, and it aims to foster local talent by featuring international stars.
Anticipation around the ISL seemed to have been building with the organisers receiving positive response from more than 30 interested parties to its 'Invitation To Bid' tender notice. The bids closed on March 27.