Giving the league a miss will be Northeast United FC, Odisha FC, Punjab FC and Indian Arrows
Eighteen teams comprising reserve sides of eight Indian Super League franchises and two I-League clubs will compete in the preliminary round of I-League second division.
Giving the league a miss will be Northeast United FC, Odisha FC, Punjab FC and Indian Arrows.
The preliminary round will kick off in the last week of January. Teams will play on a home-and-away basis against other teams within a group.
The winners of each group along with the best second-placed team between Group A and C would qualify for the final round.
However, if reserve teams of ISL clubs finish as winners or runners-up in any group, the position will be passed on to the next non-ISL team.
In the final round, four qualified teams will play at the central venue on a ‘single-leg’ league system. Eventually, the winners will qualify to the next edition of I-League.
Group A: Lonestar Kashmir FC, Punjab FC (reserves), Garhwal FC, Rajasthan FC, ATK (reserves), Jamshedpur FC (reserves).
Group B: Mohammedan Sporting, Bhawanipore, Indian Arrows (reserves), Hyderabad FC (reserves), Bengaluru FC (reserves), Chennaiyin FC (reserves).
Group C: ARA FC, Mumbai City FC (reserves), FC Goa (reserves), FC Bengaluru United, FC Kerala, Kerala Blasters (reserves).
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