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Churchill Brothers, three other clubs thrown out of I-League

Posted on May 21 2014 | IANS

New Delhi, May 21 : Former champions Churchill Brothers, along with three other clubs, were Wednesday thrown out of the I-League by the All India Football Federation (AIFF) after they failed to meet the club licencing criteria set by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).

The AIFF's Club Licencing Committee - First Instance Body - met here and decided that nine out of the 14 I-League clubs have made the grade while four have failed.

The clubs are expected to meet several legal, administrative, sporting, infrastructure and financial criteria.

Newly crowned I-League champions Bengaluru FC, Dempo SC, Pune FC, Salgaocar, East Bengal, Mohun Bagan, Sporting Clube de Goa, Mumbai FC, and Shillong Lajong FC are the nine clubs who have got the nod. Newly promoted Royal Wahingdoh have been given a one-time exemption applicable for a year only.

Churchill Brothers, Mohammedan Sporting, Rangdajied United and United SC failed to make the cut. They won't be able to take part in the forthcoming I-League in December. These clubs, however, can appeal against the decision.

Mumbai FC and Shillong Lajong though have been granted only the national licence.

"Both these clubs do not have AFC A class Stadium, but were fully compliant of the infrastructure requirement for the National License," AIFF's Club Licencing Manager Roma Khanna said.

I-League CEO Sunando Dhar said the message has gone across that AIFF is very serious on licencing.

"We have conducted two to three seminars since the First Instance Body met for the first time and gave the clubs a year's exemption. We have been there to help the clubs at all time and we are committed to further aiding them in each and every department of Club Licencing. It's nice to see most of them responding so well," the CEO added.

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