The newly formed Indonesian Premier League will likely attract more fans, particularly women, if one of its clubs succeeds in signing Filipino brothers Philip and James Younghusband.
IPL general manager Arya Abhiseka said on Tuesday that the Younghusbands, who caught the attention of Indonesian fans during the Asean Football Federation Suzuki Cup in December, would sign three-year contracts with the Jakarta 1928 football club today.
“There are still several contract details that need to be ironed out, but there’s a 90 percent chance that Philip and James will sign with Jakarta 1928,” Arya told the Jakarta Globe on Tuesday.
“I believe the deal will likely happen and they will soon both play for their new club in the IPL.”
He said the Younghusbands, who have an 11-month age difference, wanted to play together, which is why Jakarta 1928 decided to recruit both of them.
Arya also said he believed the addition of the two would be a great boost to the IPL, which is a breakaway league not recognized by the Indonesian Football Association (PSSI).
“I think they will add quality to the play in the IPL and, of course, will attract more fans, especially women,” he said.
However, Arya said he did not know the details of the contract.
“They are not one of IPL’s marquee players, so contract details are the club’s prerogative,” he said.
Jakarta 1928 officials were not immediately available for comment.
James, the older of the brothers, appeared to play down the talks on Tuesday evening.
A tweet by Philippine sports journalist Chino Trinidad quoted James as saying: “We are still talking. Our priority is still the PHL Azkals,” referring to the Philippines national team.