With the promise of promotion to the ISL, the stakes are high at the I-League, which kicks off on Saturday. Two matches are lined up on the opening day – Real Kashmir vs Rajasthan United at Srinagar; and Gokulam Kerala vs Inter Kashi here.
The Varanasi-based Inter Kashi is one of the two new entrants, having won the bid, along with Namdhari Sports Academy (Punjab). Delhi FC and Shillong Lajong have earned promotions, at the expense of Mumbai Kenkre and Sudeva Delhi.
Thirteen teams will vie for the top spot, which ensures a place in the ISL, which Punjab FC (previously RoundGlass Punjab) got last season.
Gokulam was the I-League champion in the two seasons before that. It should be among the contenders this time around, too.
“The club’s ambitions are obviously to seek promotion, but we have to focus game by game to achieve it,” said Gokulam’s coach Domingo Oramas.
“We’ve been working hard for almost two months for the season, and we are very excited to get it kicking off,” said the Kashi coach Carlos Santamarina.
-PK Ajith Kumar
When and where to watch I-League 2023-24?
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