With the culmination of the group stages of the Indian Super League, there seems to be widespread confusion over the venue for the final of the tournament.
The summit clash was initially slated to be held in defending champion ATK's Salt Lake Stadium but as per recent developments, the venue seems to have shifted. While Kochi was also seen as a possible venue, Bengaluru's Sree Kanteerava Stadium seems most likely to host the glitzy final.
With most matches packed to the rafters and an immense fan following, Bengaluru makes a strong case. "The reasons attributing to the change in venue include the facts that ATK endured a terrible season and failed to make it to the playoffs and that Kolkata hasn't boasted a great attendance this season," a source privy to the development said.
Bengaluru FC, which topped the charts at the end of the league phase is joined by 2015 champion Chennaiyin FC, free-scoring FC Goa and a resurgent FC Pune City in the last-four stage.
While Bengaluru faces Pune City, Chennaiyin will lock horns with Goa for a berth in the summit clash. For the first leg of the semifinals, Pune hosts Bengaluru and Chennaiyin travels to Goa on March 7 and 10 respectively. The return fixtures, which will be played on 11th and 13th, will see BFC and CFC enjoy home advantage.
It will be a massive boost for BFC if it can get past Pune as it will have a chance to play the ISL final in front of its boisterous home crowd, in its debut season. An official statement from the league is expected over the next couple of days.