The Indian Super League is set to become bigger and how. According to latest reports, the ISL has invited bids to bring in up to three new teams for the next edition of the ISL which could include a second team from Kolkata.
So ISL is likely to be a 10 team affair from 2017-18. The 10 new cities are in line to play hosts to one of the three possible new teams in the Indian Super League, including Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Cuttack, Durgapur, Hyderabad, Jamshedpur, Kolkata, Ranchi, Siliguri and Thiruvananthapuram.
The Football Sports Development Limited organises the ISL and they have invited bids from corporates or consortiums. Entities can pick up their Invitation to Bid tender document between May 12 and May 24 and after fulfilling all the criteria mentioned in the documents, they need to submit those documents by May 25, 2017.
The ISL noted:
All bidding parties will need to fulfil the eligibility criteria and other requirements specified in the ITB including but not limited to summary of plans to operate their team in the league, including the business model and plan to develop the sport at the grassroots level. The bid documents must be submitted on Thursday, 25th May 2017.
Earlier plans had a possible merger of the ISL and the Indian I-League but that plan has fallen through after the I-League champions Aizawl FC refused to accept the ruling that they would have to play in a lower division despite having won the title. The original plan was to include East Bengal and Mohun Bagan as two teams from the I-League in the ISL while Aizawl were supposed to play in the second division which they opposed.
In a statement released by Aizawl FC:
If no positive response is received from AIFF, the club will approach central sports minister, prime minister of India and also president of AFC. If these steps are failed, the club will have no other choice but will resort to world-wide protests, sitting demonstration near AFC/Fifa offices, picketing of AIFF office, mass hunger strike/fast unto death protest.