TFA looking to be a part of the second division I-League

Updated: Mar 21, 2012, 15:48 PM IST

New Delhi: Tata Football Academy, the stable that has provided Indian football with some of the best talents over the years, has expressed its interest to field a team in the second division I-League.

The academy had been kept out of the on field action as it is not a "commercial entity", a pre-requisite set by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to be a part of the country`s topmost league.

The governing body regulations say that a team needs to be a legal entity, and since the TFA is governed by Tata Steel Sports Foundation, a nonprofit organisation, it cannot be a part of the competition.

"There is an AFC regulation that the team which participates in the competition should be a commercial entity and since the TFA is governed by non-profit organisation we have not been allowed to take part in the league," said vice president, corporate services Tata Steel, Sanjiv Paul.

"We have requested the AIFF to give us a wavier so that we can have our own team, they have agreed informally to have our B-division team and probably next year onwards we may be allowed to play," he said on the sidelines of a function here.

Meanwhile, the AIFF said they were discussing the various aspects of TFA`s inclusion into the domestic setup.

"They (TFA) have requested AIFF, they be allowed to play the second division league. But for that to happen they need to be a separate entity," general secretary AIFF, Kushal Das said.

"We are discussing the matter and will reach the conclusion in due course of time. However, we have asked them to guarantee the formation of a proper legal entity within one to two years, and their entry would be made possible only as per the regulations," he added.