With tension simmering between the AIFF and I-League clubs, who feel ignored by the administration, as many as seven sides have reportedly decided to boycott Super Cup starting on March 15. This happened after the AIFF didn’t bother to respond to the I-league clubs, who had seeked an appointment.
Seven I-League clubs have now conveyed to the AIFF ( All India Football Federation ) that they will boycott the second edition of the Super Cup that would take place in Bhubaneshwar. The I-League clubs had formed an association last month and wrote a letter seeking an appointment with the AIFF President Praful Patel, but he failed to respond to it, much to the dismay of the I-League clubs.
Hence, after a lot of deliberation, seven I-League clubs headed by Minerva Punjab have decided to boycott the Super Cup. Minerva Punjab owner Ranjit Bajaj, who has been at loggerheads with the AIFF for some time now, had written another letter to AIFF on Tuesday stating, “The I-League clubs are being ignored at the hands of the AIFF, our concerns and issues are not addressed which are in the larger interest of the game,“ reported TOI
Apart from Punjab, Mohun Bagan, Chennai City FC, East Bengal, Gokulam Kerala FC,
“Most of us are upset because the AIFF has not bothered to speak with us. Whatever the AIFF may have to say, we will listen to them and reconsider our stand. But first, let’s talk,“ said one of the team owners.
The clubs have also pointed out that the AIFF does not give any financial assistance to them for their participation in the Super Cup. It should be noted that the Super Cup does not have any significance for it does not even offer a spot on the AFC Cup, an international association football competition between different Asian Clubs.
On the other hand, Churchill Brother FC owner Churchill Alemao has confirmed his club’s participation. Indian Arrows, revived by the AIFF in 2017 after their disbanding, did not have a choice. The same goes with Shillong Lajong FC, which is owned by a committee member of the AIFF and Real Kashmir FC would also go ahead with their participation.
The qualifiers, which begin from March 15, will be played between the 7-10 ranked teams in the ISL and the I-League. Incidentally, the first qualifier has been scheduled to kick off between Minerva Punjab and FC Pune City. The top six teams, each of the ISL and the I-League, along with four qualified teams will play in the main tournament that has been scheduled from March 29. The finals are scheduled for April 13.
Cricket FootBall Kabaddi