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  Sports   Football  26 Oct 2018  I-League: Chennai City to face arrows in opener

I-League: Chennai City to face arrows in opener

PTI
Published : Oct 26, 2018, 1:14 am IST
Updated : Oct 26, 2018, 1:14 am IST

The All India Football Federation’s development side Indian Arrows and Chennai City FC face each other in the opening match in Coimbatore on Friday.

(Photo: AFP)
 (Photo: AFP)

New Delhi: Its future uncertain due to the impending restructuring of the country’s football structure, the I-League kicks off Friday with a lot of promise following a fantastic previous season and a fair amount of buzz due to Real Kashmir’s debut in the top division.

The All India Football Federation’s development side Indian Arrows and Chennai City FC face each other in the opening match in Coimbatore on Friday.

Eleven clubs from 10 states will vie for top honours in the league which will continue for over six months.

Srinagar-based Real Kashmir FC are making their debut in the I-League after winning the second division league earlier this year.

There is quite a buzz in the Kashmir Valley in anticipation of the first I-League coming to Srinagar and also after the two-year-old club scooped a major sponsorship deal with global sportswear major Adidas.

Since the launch of the cash-rich franchise-based Indian Super League in 2013, the I-League has been the poor cousin of the ISL, though the All Indian Football Federation would still describe it as the top league in the country.

In terms of the spectators turning out during matches or the playing conditions and pitch, the I-League seemed to be inferior to the ISL though majority of its matches were also telecast live.

But surprisingly, the competitiveness among the teams and even the quality of football, according to experts, were almost similar in both the leagues last season.

In the previous season, the I-League went down the wire with four clubs — Minerva Punjab, Neroca, Mohun Bagan and East Bengal — in title contention going into the final match day.

Tags: i-league, all india football federation