New Delhi: FC Pune City 'icon' player and former French international David Trezeguet said Monday that he is happy to be a part of India's first major push for development of football through the Indian Super League (ISL) and is committed to sharing his expertise in raising the profile of the game here.
"I am happy to be part of this new concept in Indian football. Players like Alessandro Del Piero (Delhi Dynamos) and Nicolas Anelka (Mumbai City FC) are playing here, and it raises the profile of the game in India.
"It is a new experience for us. We all need to support each other and help in developing the standard of football here," the former Juventus striker said at a press conference ahead of his team's first match of ISL against hosts Delhi Dynamos here Tuesday.
He also hoped that he and his old Juventus teammate Del Piero, having shared a lot of fine goal-scoring memories, will be up for the new challenge they are faced with at the twilight of their illustirous careers.
"This will be the first time that I will be playing against Alessandro and it's definitely a new experience for me. I look forward to it. Hope we will be ready for the challenge," he said.
He patted the back of his Indian teammates, observing "they are good" and have the ability to improve as players, when asked about the gulf in footballing standards between 'marquee' players like him and his Indian counterparts.
"Hopefully, their experience of playing with top players will open a new way of getting entry into other top leagues abroad for them," said the 1998 World Cup winner, insisiting that "their aim should always be develop and play in higher leagues".
His team, though, are saddled with injury problems with three players - Joaquim Abranches, Pratik Shinde and David Colomba all sidelined with various complaints.
Pune coach Italian Franco Colomba was unperturbed about the three unavailable players and insisted that his team is strong enough to take on Dynamos with the "23 players available".
"Winning the first match is always important. It will bolster the mental strength of the players. We had a week-long training camp at Fiorentina and the experience was good. Hope it helps us in winning the first match," he said.