New Delhi : Expressing sadness over the decision made by former champions Salgaocar and fellow Goan side Sporting Clube de Goa to withdraw from the next edition of the I-League, All India Football Federation (AIFF) general secretary Kushal Das has urged the two aggrieved clubs to view the proposed three-tier structure for the Indian football ‘rationally’ and not ’emotionally’.
On Friday, India’s club football system was thrown into turmoil after Salgaocar and Sporting Clube de Goa pulled out of the next edition of the I-League citing the AIFF’s proposed structure for the next year as the reason.
“My message to other clubs would be to look at the proposal rationally and not emotionally. Over the last many years none of the clubs have made money. We are in the process of creating a sustainable model which will allow the clubs to become financially sound,” Das told ANI.
The proposed revamped model would make the burgeoning Indian Super League (ISL) the country’s top tier domestic tournament while the current I-League and League Two would be the second and third division respectively.
The Goa-based clubs’ main point of contention is the fact that, the I-League, rechristened as League One, wouldn’t have direct promotion to the top division while their participation would hinge upon their ability to handle the financial aspect of being in the ISL.
Explaining the rationale behind the proposal, Das continued: “The whole model of league one was based on making it sustainable so that clubs have minimum guaranteed revenue. And the idea was once they become all sustainable then we would open up promotion and relegation because now for a club playing in league one to move and play the ISL means a completely different ball game in terms of operating budgets.”
The AIFF general secretary further said that he will travel to Goa on Friday to meet the owners of the two Goan clubs and would try to resolve all the outstanding concerns and if possible reach an amicable consensus.
“We are saddened that two of the oldest clubs have taken this decision. I am meeting them in Goa on July 1st to try and understand what exactly their concerns are and if possible address them,” he said. (ANI)