Corporate interest despite JCT decision: Patel



Corporate interest despite JCT decision: Patel New Delhi: All India Football Federation president Praful Patel is hardly perturbed by JCT club's decision to disband and said that corporate interest in bankrolling new teams will not be reduced by the Phagwara-based side's pulling out.

"It's a decision taken by the JCT management. They must have been facing financial difficulty that led to them in disbanding the team. I don't think it's an alarming sign," said the AIFF supremo.

Although JCT's decision has sent shockwaves in the Indian football fraternity, Patel put up a brave face, stating that there are many business houses who have spoken to him about starting new clubs.

"JCT may have disbanded their team but we have many big corporate houses who have expressed keen interest in running football clubs. In fact, the Jindals are interested in starting a new clubs," Patel, also Union Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, said.

Asked whether an alarming trend has started among the corporates to disband clubs, Patel took a dig at the JCT management, saying, "You need passion and professionalism to run a football club. Then only will you succeed."

The AIFF president, however, dismissed the possibility of personally speaking to JCT owner Samir Thapar requesting him to reconsider his decision of disbanding the club.

"Why should I speak to him? It's his decision. But definitely on AIFF's part we would have a dialogue with them."

When asked about JCT management mentioning the lack of interest and television coverage of I-League matches, Patel said, "I have said earlier that last year was a transition phase and things will be sorted out this year."

PTI