The All India Football Federation (AIFF) decided to move the group A and D matches of the Federation Cup to Jamshedpur from Ranchi after the latter was found unfit to host the tournament.
Given that Jamshedpur’s JRD Tata Sports Complex doesn’t have floodlights which means that one of two matches daily would kickoff at afternoon. The I-League clubs have already voiced their opinion and are said to be unhappy with this arrangement.
The AIFF are said to be considering Keenan Stadium at Jamshedpur, which hosts cricket matches, to host the matches as well as it has floodlights. However permission for the same has to be procured and the final decision on the same is expected on Tuesday evening.
The whole saga could have been averted had the AIFF inspected Ranchi prior to assigning the Federation Cup games to the said venue. A senior vice-president thereafter confirmed that Ranchi would be fit to host the matches but a visit by another vice-president told a different story. In his report, he mentioned that the Morabadi Stadium was uneven while Mega City Sports Complex had two cricket pitches in the middle of the stadium.
An expert was called upon to give his insights on whether the two stadiums at Ranchi would be fit in time for the Federation Cup and the response was in the negative which further put the AIFF in the dock.
Interestingly, I-League teams had already booked their hotels in Ranchi while the AIFF had confirmed the tickets to Jharkhand’s capital. Now the teams would have to endure a three-to-four hour journey by road to reach Jamshedpur from Ranchi airport.