East Bengal chances brighten as ISL invites bid for new team

Two days after finding an investor in Shree Cement, East Bengal’s chances of playing in the next edition of the Indian Super League (ISL) further brightened when the league announced on Friday it would issue an invitation to bid for one more team.

“Bids are invited in respect of 06 cities – Delhi, Ludhiana, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Siliguri and Bhopal. Under and subject to the Invitation To Bid (ITB), one (01), new winning bidder and accordingly one new team shall be enrolled and awarded the right to participate in the Hero Indian Super League from the seventh season onwards,” said the document issued jointly by the league and All India Football Federation.

The ITB will be available on September 7 and 8 and can be procured after a non-refundable payment of Rs 5 lakh, according to the announcement. The bid must be submitted by September 14 by e-mail with the hard copy needing to reach the Mumbai office of Football Sports Development Limited, the company that organises ISL, by September 17.

Bhutia launches app

ISL7 is likely to begin behind closed doors with union sports minister Kiren Rijiju saying the decision to let in spectators will need to be taken by states because the Covid-19 situation is not the same everywhere.

Rijiju was speaking at the launch of a football training app ‘enJogo’ created by Bhaichung Bhutia Football School (BBFS). Available on Google Play, the interactive app has guided do-it-yourself workouts, live coaching, provision for training with friends and on-field coaching. Users can also track their progress.

“With fields not accessible it was important to reach out to kids through technology. The app can also be used by professionals and we are open to the national team using it,” said Bhaichung Bhutia.

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