4 new teams have submitted bids to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) for spots in the 2017-18 season of the I-League.
AIFF had invited bids from new clubs last month from various cities across the country, including Bengaluru, Mumbai, New Delhi, Ranchi, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Bhopal, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Malappuram and Trivandrum.
Bengaluru’s Ozone FC, who are currently plying in the I-League 2nd division, and Gokulam FC, who are based from Malappuram in Kerala, have submitted their bids.
2 new clubs from Rajasthan and Gujarat are also understood have submitted the bid documents, expressing their interest to participate in the national league which will run parallel to Indian Super League (ISL) this season.
The 4 bids will be evaluated on 18th August before the Indian FA comes to a decision as to award the I-League spots to which of those teams.
The AIFF were keen to include a team from Bengaluru, given the exit of the hugely popular Bengaluru FC who opted to play in the ISL, which prompted a bid from Ozone FC who have been pushing for the same for quite a while now.
Meanwhile, if Gokulam FC’s bid is accepted, they will be the first team from Kerala to play in the I-League since the relegation of Chirag United Kerala after the 2011-12 season.
No team has ever participated in I League, from Rajasthan and Gujarat, till date.