FC Pune City dismisses reports of players being released

Indian Super League outfit FC Pune City has dismissed media reports that the club released its players after failing to pay their salaries on time.

FC Pune City players Robin Singh (second from right) and Adil Khan (extreme right) are optimistic of playing the Super Cup.   -  ISL Media

Indian Super League outfit FC Pune City has dismissed media reports that the club has released its players amid delays in paying their salaries.

"The fact is that in the entire season we have never had a situation where players’ salary has been delayed for more than 20 days. As a matter of fact, sometimes we have also paid them 10 days in advance. So whatever has been reported is untrue," the football club's owner Gaurav Modwel told Sportstar.

He said the squad, including the foreigners, will be back in Pune for the Super Cup, and youngsters such as Mohammad Yasir, Rohit Kumar and Anuj Kumar will be given chances to play in the knockout tournament.

Defensive mainstay Adil Khan said he has not received any official word from the club regarding the issue and that he will return to training next week.

"I am officially still a part of the the club, I have not received any notice that we are shutting down or that we have been released. My contract is valid for another three months and I will be playing the Super Cup," he said.

Talking about the delays in salaries, he said: "Our salaries were delayed, but it was not that we did not get our salaries. The players know that we are going through a financial issue. It has never happened before. I've played in Indian football for the last 10 years and this isn't a new phenomenon or a big issue, at least for me."

Adil, however, admitted to have received feelers from other clubs to play for them in the Super Cup. He declined to name the clubs that had reached out to him. The Indian football circuit is abuzz that Kolkata clubs have made a play for him.

Striker Robin Singh said he was shocked by the news of the players being released and immediately called up Modwel.

"I read the story on the internet and the first thing I did was call up Gaurav. I asked him what this was about and he replied there was nothing to worry about and that we would be playing the Super Cup.

"We have unfortunately not made it to the playoffs, but this is a moment to get back to the drawing board and prepare well for the Super Cup," he said.

"We all want to play and club wants us to play and that's the truth. I'm back in Pune day after tomorrow because I want to start training again."