AIFF, Kolkata clubs talks hit deadlock, will meet on Monday

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Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and the All India Football Federation (AIFF)
Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and the All India Football Federation (AIFF)

New Delhi, June 10 : With the meeting between Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and the All India Football Federation (AIFF) regarding the Kolkata giants’ participation in the ISL not yielding any results on Saturday, the three parties will meet again on Monday to sort out the issue.

The two Kolkata clubs, who currently play in the I-League, have put out various conditions before the AIFF for their inclusion in the Indian Super League (ISL).

Among other things, the two clubs have demanded that they should be exempt from paying the franchisee fee of Rs 15 crore and they should be allowed to use Kolkata as their home base.

AIFF President Praful Patel said that Saturday’s discussions have ended a deadlock.

“No final decisions have been taken today”, Patel was quoted as saying by Goal.com after the meeting.

The issue of using Kolkata as a home base by Mohun Bagan and East Bengal have grave implications for Atletico de Kolkata — the current ISL representatives from the city — as it will mean that their support base in football-crazy West Bengal will disappear overnight.

Officials from the Kolkata clubs have warned that if their demands are not met, they will not take things lying down.

“Tempers were high during the meeting. If our demands are not met, we will not take things lying down,” a club official told IANS on condition of anonymity.

The two clubs have also demanded that if they are not allowed to participate in the ISL, then the status quo should be maintained with the I-League being held at a different time of the season.

“A few new options have been discussed and we will talk about that,” Indian Football Association (IFA) Secretary Utpal Ganguli said.

The IFA — the governing body of the game1 in West Bengal — is negotiating with the AIFF on behalf of the clubs.

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