From the outset itself, one aim of the Indian Super League has been to get the world’s best footballers to come and showcase their talent in India.
This has resulted in the league featuring prominent international footballers in the 3 seasons so far. Here is a list of FIFA World Cup winners who have been part of the league.
ALESSANDRO DEL PIERO
The Italian maestro turned out for the Delhi Dynamos in the inaugural season. Del Piero had won the coveted FIFA World Cup with the Italian team in the year 2006.
His moment of the tournament came against hosts Germany in the semi-final, when he scored the second goal of the match to give the Azzuri a memorable win.
The mid-fielder was part of the great French team that won the FIFA World Cup at home in 1998. Pires was part of the squad but not a regular first team member.
He would go on to win the 2000 UEFA Euro with the Les Bleus as well, where he was a central figure alongside the likes of Zinedine Zidane and Thierry Henry. He was the marquee player for FC Goa in the inaugural season.
The tall striker was also part of the World Cup winning team of 1998. Although he cemented his first team place later on.
His moment of international glory came in the final of the 2000 UEFA Euro, when he scored the Golden Goal in the final against Italy. Trezeguet turned out for FC Pune City in the first season of the ISL.
The Spanish defender was part of the NorthEast United FC set up in the first season.
Not as celebrated as the duo of Carles Puyol and Sergio Ramos, but Capdevila played in each and every game and minute of Spain’s victorious campaign in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. He had also won the 2008 UEFA Euro with the Spanish national team.
The tall defender was in many ways Italy’s player of the tournament in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Starting the tournament as a reserve player, Materazzi was included in the side after an injury to regular defender Alessandro Nesta.
Materazzi scored the all important equaliser for Italy in the final against France. His altercation with Zinedine Zidane led to the French mid-field general head-butting the Italian, which led to Zidane’s ouster.
Italy went on to win the World Cup on penalties. The Italian signed up with Chennaiyin FC as a coach-cum-player in the 2014 season. He guided them to the title in the second season.
The charismatic full-back, known for his dynamite free-kicks, was part of Brazil’s record extending 5th FIFA World Cup triumph in the year 2002. He took charge of the Delhi Dynamos team in the second season as coach-cum-player.
The tall Brazilian defender too was part of the great 2002 FIFA World Cup team, which won the first World Cup to be played on Asian soil. Lucio signed up for the FC Goa outfit in 2015.