When Portuguese coach Francisco Neto expressed displeasure with the fitness and quality of the Team Goa-India squad under preparation for the Lusofonia games to be held in Goa, the Goa Football Association (GFA) immediately sprang into action, following their executive committee meeting.
The consensus of all at the meeting was that the Goa squad needed to be strengthened. It is in this regard that all four of the Goan I-League clubs have decided to release their local players for the upcoming tournament. However it was yet to be decided whether the top or the second string players would be released.
“It is the prerogative of the Goan I-League clubs as they have the prestigious Federation Cup in mind,” expounded an official in light of the matter to The Herald.
An initial agreement between the I-League clubs and the GFA agreed that Goan players be released to participate in the upcoming games. However, an unexpected postponement of the Federation Cup, which has now been postponed from the 14th of January to the 31st of January, has seen its dates clash with the Lusofonia Games.
Now, the GFA is using the guise of the Lusofonia Games being an international event to force through the release of Goan players for the tournament. The association are expected to raise the issue at the All India Football Federation (AIFF) meeting on 29th December.
They plan on suggesting to the Indian FA to postpone the Federation Cup further so as to facilitate the release of the players, from their respective I-League clubs, for an international tournament, as mandated.
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