‘Total of 17 teams could lead to I-League-ISL merger’
The All India Football Federation (AIFF) secretary Kushal Das on Wednesday admitted that the parent bidy is seriously mulling the option of a merger between the I-League and IMG-R promoted ISL as it would mean a national league with 17 teams. “It is true that teams have come down in I-League. But two new teams have also come up. One team which is no longer in League didn’t have any vision. But the issue of Pune FC, not playing is a matter of concern. Maybe, they have not been able to develop a fan base in all these years, inspite of handling it professionally. And in case of Royal Wahingdoh, the reasons are financial,” AIFF general secretary Kushal Das said at the launch of the Hero I-League 2015-16. “But if you see the overall picture, two years back there were 12 teams playing the I league and now by combining two leagues, you have 17 teams playing, which helps us in thinking about merger much more,” Das said.