India team agrees Panasonic deal

CHENNAI - India's preparations for next year's Asian Cup have received a financial boost after Japanese tech firm Panasonic agreed to a three-year sponsorship deal worth $1 million per year to the national football team.

"Football is the second-most popular sport in India and there is a huge potential to grow," All India Football Federation President Praful Patel was quoted as saying on the Asian Football Council website on Monday.

"We are hopeful that our association with Panasonic will support our mission to take Indian football to global standards."

India qualified for the 2011 Asian Cup in Doha after a gap of 25 years by winning the 2008 Challenge Cup.