The nationwide tournament is targeted towards amateur footballers between the age group of 14 to 30 years, who can register in seven-member teams. The tournament will engage around 64 teams from each city who will compete in knock-out style (20-minute matches) and the top 32 will compete in the respective city finales. The city finale will be organized in a unique metallic cage at a public venue. One winning team from each city, totalling eight teams, and a wild card entry, will compete with each other to emerge as the ‘Game Changers'. The winning team will then get the opportunity to be coached by an international football star, before competing at the grand finale against Indian cricketers.
Commenting on the initiative, Homi Battiwalla, Category Director - Colas, Hydration and Mango Based Beverages, PepsiCo India said: "The Pepsi T20 Football tournament takes forward the philosophy of ‘Change the Game' by taking football outside the conventional domain and giving it a refreshing twist. It is a unique grassroots initiative mounted at a never before scale in India that aims to take the excitement around the sport to the next level. Football is gaining immense popularity in India and, being a true youth soul mate, Pepsi is proud to be associated with the sport. With the involvement of Indian cricketers, Bollywood and an international football star; the campaign promises to excite and engage not only the existing passionate football fans, but the entire nation."
The tournament will be supported by a 360-degree approach including on-air, outdoor and on-ground initiatives, special edition packaging, and digital engagement programmes. Furthermore, Pepsi has partnered with ESPN Star Sports, who will produce and showcase the tournament.
MindShare Dialect, a division of MindShare, will execute a poster drive across colleges, eateries and youth hangouts in the cities where the matches are taking place, which will be supported by a radio campaign, with local RJs explaining the new format and inviting listeners to the registration venues. Additionally, there is an extensive digital activation with SMS and website promotions. ESPN Star Sports is the telecast partner for the event.
Speaking about the promotions planned around the cities, Ruchi Mathur, Business Director, MindShare, Group M said: "We are planning to organise a one-on-one contact program with city football associations and clubs. This tournament is a four to five month engagement program that kick started in February and will conclude with a grand finale in June. We are expecting the other cities to take off with equal, if not more, enthusiasm."