Bengaluru FC hopeful of ending impasse over Sree Kanteerava Stadium

If the stadium-sharing agreement is not arrived at in time, Ahmedabad and Pune have been lined up as alternative venues for the club.

Athletes and trainers protest at Townhall, in Bengaluru on September 06, 2019.   -  K. MURALI KUMAR

With just about a month left for the start of new Indian Super League season, Bengaluru FC is still hopeful of playing at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium.

The use of the premises by JSW-owned BFC for its home matches is being opposed by the athletics fraternity. If the stadium-sharing agreement is not arrived at in time, Ahmedabad and Pune have been lined up as alternative venues.

“Hopefully it gets sorted,” said Mandar Tamhane, the club CEO. “Dialogues are happening. It’s not a definite no or a definite yes. But going out of Bangalore and playing is not good for us. Whether it is the fans or the comfort zone the players enjoy…it is going to bother us.”

‘Want everybody to play’

“For us it is not about stopping any sport [from thriving]. We as a group are promoting other sports as well; cricket, kabaddi, athletics, judo etc. We want everybody to survive and everybody to play.”

The deadline to submit stadium-related licensing documents to the AFC and AIFF is September 15. “We have to submit documents for a certain stadium but if we don’t get the desired stadium in Bangalore, we can change later,” Tamhane stated.

“[For ISL] it is more about the logistics. If 15th is the deadline, we won’t get more than seven to eight days after that to change [venue] because we have to get the pitch ready. That is the most important thing. We need sufficient time.”