Indian Football: AIFF to address demand for competitive football through Durand and Rovers Cup

Both Igor Stimac and Sunil Chhetri had pointed out that the players should play a minimum of 50 matches through the year and the AIFF is looking to address it by the introduction of the Durand Cup and Rovers Cup.

"The players need that many games(50 or more) to reach a level of excellence," said Chhetri.   -  PTI Photo

All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel heeded to the concerns of the national team coach Igor Stimac and skipper Sunil Chhetri that the players need to play more matches to increase competitiveness.

Speaking to Sportstar, Patel said, "Their (Stimac and Chhetri) opinion is fair enough. That is an issue which can be looked into. We are reviving the Durand Cup, WIFA (Western India Football Association) is reviving Rovers (Cup) so players can have more games. I want the players to benefit. We need a solid pool for the coach to choose from, only then will the national team benefit."

However, he also added, "Can we say we are happy with the performance of the national team? The answer is yes and no. Yes, because we have moved to 100 from 173 (India’s current ranking is 103rd in the world). But can be that be the benchmark? I will say no. I am not happy."

Read the full interview here: Praful Patel looks for happy marriage between ISL and I-League