The I-League just won’t die out. Despite the best efforts of every stakeholder, the All India Football Federation included, to muzzle, strangle and choke the life out of it’s most organic product, the I-League just keeps punching forced retirement in the face.
The latest in a long line of injustices to a league that’s produced not one, not two, but arguably five exciting seasons on the trot, was that Star Sports, the official broadcaster decided to pull the plug from half of this season’s remaining matches.
It was bad enough that Star’s broadcast quality of the I-League forced clubs to write in to the AIFF. This announcement, coming days after that, is surprising given that it comes just days after the Kolkata Derby generated so much frenzy and fanfare online.
While Star’s treatment of Indian football’s biggest local game was below par, the coverage of defending champions Minerva Punjab versus league leaders Chennai City was truly shocking – a level of broadcast quality many termed as having been shot by a mobile.
As one Twitterati rightly asked, the Real Kashmir and Aizawl story shows that the romance of Indian football and football by it’s very nature lies in its heartlands – the minnows in the corners and edges of this very country. That there are no takers for this romance is truly debatable.