16 teams of  I-League to be divided into 2 groups?


The I-League 2023–24 is going to be played with 16 teams. In the 17th season of the league, The AIFF accepted five bids for direct entry into India’s second-tier football league.

The once-top-tier league of Indian Football is walking on the path of realignment. Additional teams, extra matches, and new challenges will definitely help Indian Football to find new gems to implement Vision 2047.

Promotion and Relegation:

According to last year’s League table, two bottom-placed clubs, Mumbai Kenkre and Sudeva Delhi, face relegation. Following this, Delhi FC and Shillong Lajong will be promoted to replace them.

Last season’s I-League champion RoundGlass Punjab gets promotion to the Hero Indian Super League, India’s top-tier Football league.

New Entrants:

A senior AIFF official said,

“The five corporate bidders meet the criteria and tick all the boxes.”

Nimida United (owners of FC Bengaluru United), YMS Finance (owners of Inter Kasi), Namdhari Sports Academy (Ludhiana), Concatenate Advest Advisory Pvt. Ltd., and Bunkerhill Pvt. Ltd. will be the new entrants.

Whereas,the participation of Bunkerhill Pvt. Ltd. depends on their shareholding issue with another I-League club, Mohammedan FC.

2 groups, 16 teams, 8 teams in each:

AIFF has decided to lessen the financial and physical burden on the clubs and players and plans to change the format.

According to the new format, Sixteen teams will likely be divided into two groups. An official said,

“There will be 16 teams in the I-League, but we will not have the traditional home and away format.”

Eight groups from each zone will face each other twice in this competition.

The top four teams from each zone will qualify for the playoffs, whereas the bottom four will be battling for relegation.

The AIFF is also planning to host the playoffs in neutral venues. . Maharashtra’s Kolhapur , Nagaland’s Kohima are the considerable options.

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