Premier Futsal hits back at AIFF

Mumbai, July 11 (IANS) Premier Futsal on Monday hit back at All India Football Federation (AIFF) saying that the league does not need the sanction or authorization of country’s football governing body.

“Premier Futsal does not need the sanction or authorization of the AIFF, and does not intend to poach players etc. – there are anyway no registered futsallers there,” it said in a release.

“Conducting a semi-professional league is fully permissible legally in our democracy and has been validated by legal experts at our end. We have just completed ‘Launchpad’ – our talent hunt programme to scout for young Indian Futsal players who could play alongside top International Futsallers and Football Legends in the inaugural edition of Premier Futsal starting July 15.

“As entrepreneurs, we were pursuing our Honorary Prime Minister’s call for innovation in entrepreneurship and through Premier Futsal we are introducing one of the world’s fastest growing sport to India. The high-handed and negative approach of the AIFF is appalling and is a blatant attempt to use its clout to stunt the progress of entrepreneurship in the field of sports.”

The league further said that “legal precedence states that one entity cannot have monopoly over a particular sport. Neither AIFF nor any sporting authority can claim to be sole custodians of a sport in India.”

Premier Futsal also made it clear that Portugal football legend Deco has pulled out of the league due to injury and not due to non-payment of a signing amount.

“We, at, Premier Futsal, would like to strongly refute falsities that are leading to unnecessary rumour-mongering about the very legal existence of the league. One such falsity that is being fuelled is that the International football legend, Deco will not be participating in inaugural season of Premier Futsal due to non-payment of a signing amount,” the release said.

“Just to set the record straight, Deco is unable to participate in the inaugural season of Premier Futsal due to an injury. We will soon circulate a video message from Deco himself to expose these baseless statements planted to artificially create a negative perception around our league,” Premier Futsal said.

Premier Futsal is a semi-professional, private league and is in collaboration with Futsal Association of India (FAI), which falls under the Asociacion Mundial de Futsal (AMF). Premier Futsal is obtains technical support from the AMF which has been the world governing body for Futsal since 1971. Globally, the AMF and FIFA co-exist. The FAI, a recognized sports body, is the only entity that has been working towards the development of Futsal in India for 8 years.

“Furthermore, as the organizers of Premier Futsal we would like to categorically state that the league is on track and we will release all the details pertaining to team owners & fixtures in Chennai on July 12 during our curtain raiser ahead of the kick-off to the inaugural season on July 15,” the release stated.



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