The All India Football Federation (AIFF) has not taken well to the requests from I-League clubs requesting an increase in the number of foreigners to be part of the playing XI...The All India Football Federation (AIFF) on Tuesday, declined the request put in by I-League clubs authorizing teams to play four foreign players in the playing eleven. Currently the norm is that every I-League club can have four foreigners in their squad but can only name three of those in the starting XI.
Ahead of the Federation Cup this season, the I-League Committee wherein the representatives of the clubs had put in a request for consideration wherein four foreigners could be allowed to be a part of the starting eleven. The reason was that given the amount of money spent by the clubs on foreign players, to see them on the bench doesn't allow them to get the maximum out of them.
India coach Wim Koevermans and Technical Director Rob Baan were against the clubs' request as they felt it would decrease chances for domestic players to make an impression. The decision was made at a meeting at the Football House in New Delhi that comprised of AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das, senior vice-president Subrata Dutta, vice-president Ankur Dutta and treasurer Hardev Jadeja.
The committee also planned to organize more international friendlies for India on FIFA Official matchdays so as to improve the country's FIFA ranking, which currently stands at 169. FIFA has earmarked 11 days in a calendar year for international friendlies and the AIFF plans to plan matches on some, if not all, of those days.
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