Two city views on Indian Pro-League prospects

In Kolkata, India East Bengal FC General Secretary Kalyan Majumdar and Mohammedan Sporting’s former football secretary Mohammed Qamaruddin believe the All India Football Federation's new professional league will lead to clubs recruiting professionals to run the organisations. Majumdar accepted that the National Football League started with similar aspirations but little changed in 11 seasons. Will the Professional League also go the same way? “We have to wait and see. But this is definitely a welcome move. Infrastructure-wise there would be some limitations but we will have to go ahead,” he told the Hindustan Times.

However, in Goa, the view is pessimistic. “It seems [AIFF] announced the Professional League just to please FIFA president Sepp Blatter who visited India recently,” Goa Football Association Secretary Savio Messias said. “A professional league has to be run by professionals. We still don’t know whether the same NFL committee will run the show or a separate professional body will be asked to conduct it,” he said. “The pro league would make the club accountable and that is the most heartening part of it. But that’s not enough,” added Salgaocar Sports Club Secretary A J Gomes. “They are speaking about pro league and making clubs accountable. But the AIFF is mum over whether they will share any advertising and TV revenue with the clubs,” Sporting Clube de Goa Vice-President Victor Gonsalves said.

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