Seven clubs from the I-League, namely, Chennai City, Mohun Bagan, NEROCA, Aizawl, Gokulam Kerala, Minerva Punjab and East Bengal joined forces to collectively withdraw their participation from the Super Cup citing various ideological differences with the All India Football Federation (AIFF).
The clubs, however, kept open room for negotiations and made it clear that they were ready to play if their concerns were addressed to.
In the letter to the AIFF, the seven clubs — Neroca FC, Aizawl FC, Gokulam Kerala FC and Minerva Punjab FC being the others — wrote: “We have together resolved to withdraw our respective teams´ participation from the upcoming Hero Super Cup 2019 due to the following reasons:
Our letter dated 18th February requesting the president of AIFF to address the various issues of the I-League has not been responded to.
No Clarity of the I-League and its future.
Increasing inability to find financial sponsors in the absence of clarity of the League and its future.
Lack of an agenda for the game at the grassroots level.
“You will notice that the issues we stand for are not related to any single club but for the overall development of the game in India. Neither of these moves are targeted to any individual or entity but is aimed at ensuring that the agenda of the AIFF is focused on the structure of football and the development of the game.
“Each of our clubs are keen to play and win at every level for our fans and players. We hope that the AIFF will take necessary steps to address our issues and therefore enable the conduct of the tournament. Whenever our concerns are addressed, we are ready to play and look forward to growth of this beautiful game in our country.”
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