The bad days are not yet over for Premier league Soccer. After getting a last minute clearance from the AIFF to hold the tournament it has the West Bengal govrnment blocking its way. So much so that the CMG is even thinking of shifting the whole tournament to Kerala.
Once again the Indian Football Association (Bengal football body) is caught napping as it did nothing to involve the administration and keep them in the loop. The IFA has only the Barasat Stadium at its disposal. But it needs 5 other stadiums to organize the matches.
Those stadiums cannot be used without the permission of the sports ministry. Nothing was done on that front by IFA till now.
CMG had run into some disagreements with the state government earlier over the entertainment tax for the Argentina vs Venezuela match. So getting permission on a short notice would not be an easy task.
Organizing such a tournament with big foreign stars is not possible without the help of police departments and administration in the respective districts. But things do not look good between IFA and Bengal government.
A meeting was held between the two parties where IFA secretary Utpal Ganguly explained why could not involve the government before-hand. Also, Subrato Dutta requested the sports minister to act on an urgent basis so that the image of the country doesn’t get tarnished.
Meanwhile, the CMG officials are unhappy with this attitude of the government. In case the tournament is not held or postponed, they will incur a huge financial loss. Breaking the contracts with the international players will require them to give compensation amount to the tune of Rs 20 crore. This is forcing them to shift the tournament out of West Bengal to possibly Kerala.
Kerala Football Association has contacted us and are quite eager to hold the tournament. They have at least 6 stadiums in as many cities and are in better condition than those in West Bengal