India cricket captain Virat Kohli is no longer the brand ambassador of the Premier Futsal league, according to a report by Mumbai Mirror.
Kohli had previously faced heat for being associated with the league, which is not officially recognised by the All India Football Federation. Praful Patel, the AIFF president, had called him out in a tweet back in June 2016.
Kohli is already a co-owner of FC Goa in the Indian Super League, which is what reportedly prompted the tweet from Patel. The report suggests that pressure from the Indian football federation finally led Kohli to cut all ties with the league this year. Kohli and his team completed the legal formalities for an amicable parting of ways with the league, it added.
Interestingly, the Indian captain’s images were used for promotions back in July when Ronaldinho had come to promote the league in India. The second edition of the Premier Futsal begins on Friday in Mumbai, with football legends like Ronaldinho, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, and Deco participating in the tournament.
Kohli was announced as the brand ambassador of the league in April last year and had actively promoted the tournament last year, with an appearance in the Futsal Anthem video with AR Rahman as well.
“Futsallers display a lot of flair, skill and swag on the field, which are all qualities I relate to,” he had said back then. “I am tremendously excited to be a part of Premier Futsal and motivated to positively contribute to the development of this wonderful new sport in India.”