Second Div ties from March 11

Football: I-League

The Bangalore Football Stadium will play host to the Group ‘C’ matches in Round I of the Second Division I-League from March 11 to 27.

Eight teams will play in the round-robin league here which include local outfit South United Football Club. Group ‘A’ and Group ‘B’ matches will be played in Singrauli and Indore with nine and eight teams respectively.

Top two teams from each group will qualify for the double-leg Round II which will be played in Bangalore and at a venue in Kerala which is yet to be decided. Group toppers and runners-up from Round II will be promoted to the top division I-League. “Two teams will qualify for the top division I-League, provided the teams meet the club licensing criteria circulated by the All India Football Federation,” said I-League chairman A R Khaleel at a press meet here on Thursday.

When queried about the interest of the corporates in the I-League, Khaleel revealed that steel major Jindal are one of the front runners to field a Bangalore-based club. “The corporate teams will get a direct entry into the I-League but they have to provide the infrastructure for the development of football. From Bangalore, we have Jindal as one of the bidders,” said the KSFA president.

Meanwhile, the FIFA Goal Project Academy is likely to start functioning in May.
“We will have 30 trainees at the academy in the beginning. We are trying to rope in some corporates who can support the academy which will have an expense of around Rs 1.5 crore per year,” pointed out Khaleel.

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