How Will AIFF Find A Solution For The Ongoing Crisis In Indian Football?

6 I-leagues clubs, namely, Mohun Bagan, East Bengal, Minerva Punjab, Churchill Brothers, Aizwal FC & Gokulam Kerala wrote a letter to the President of FIFA Gianni Infantino, as the Indian federation forwarded a request to the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to allot the champion team of ISL an AFC Champions League qualification berth. So far that slot went to the winner of the I-League which is considered the top football league in India.

The franchise-based Indian Super League is just 5 years old and I-League clubs are not ready to hand AFC Champions League slot to ISL clubs. There have been rumours and attempts in the past to unify the I-league and the ISL. But the AIFF still says it needs 2-3 years window to resolve this issue. The AIFF has consistently maintained that they are constrained by the Master Rights Agreement (MRA) of 2010. But the question here is, Is it right to take away the top league status and accord ISL teams to compete in AFC?

When the clubs sent a letter to FIFA they intervened and have asked AIFF to provide a future roadmap for Indian football. Chief Member Associations Officer Joyce Cook wrote to AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das.
Here is the letter

If such is the case, how will the future achievements of Indian football at the global level take place? All the major European leagues follow the relegation and promotion formula and that has got results for them. Then what is making it so hard for the AIFF to take that step? Is it the stakeholders? Or companies like IMG Reliance prioritizing their league than the domestic national league? what is your take on this?


At this point, I’m pretty sure AIFF doesn’t want to. They have sold themselves to FSDL and IMG Reliance and have made ISL their topmost priority at the detriment of the I League. They asked FIFA for help about this and now that FIFA-AFC assisted them with a joint report about this on the way to proceed, they flat out deny that it is not possible to apply it in practice. It is pretty clear that the AIFF is playing a dirty game here and it can ruin the domestic scene of Indian football.


Money talks and Loudly at that. :grinning:

IPL, ISL will always be darlings of respective associations with all that perks and money.

AIFF is in soup here due to contractual obligation. AIFF had signed a Master Rights of Agreement (MRA) with its commercial partners Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL), a subsidiary of IMG-Reliance, in 2010 which had stated that a new league (ISL) could be made the top division of Indian football and that the I-League could be reconstituted, replaced and/or discontinued (temporarily or permanently). FDSL is against merger of two leagues and pushing for closure of I-League.