ISL 2017-18: ISL set to welcome the 'away goal rule' from this season's knockouts
What's the story?
Finally, the away goal rule will be implemented in the Indian Super League from the knockout stages of the 2017-18 edition. The rule will be implemented with an immediate effect from the semi-finals to be played from Wednesday.
In case you didn't know
The Indian Super League, which began in 2014 revolutionized Indian Football in many ways. It has helped India to unearth talent across the length and breadth of the country. Many young players made their way into the Indian National team on the basis if their ISL performances over the years. But there was one thing about the tournament that the fans felt was missing during the first three editions of the tournament- the away goal rule in the knockouts. But this time the AIFF has got some good news for the ISL fans.
The heart of the matter
The Indian Super League will witness the away goal rule for the first time in its four year history. The AIFF has decided to introduce the popular rule for the tournament's knockout (semi-final) stages of the 2017-18 edition. In the away goals rule, the team that has scored the most goals 'away from home' will be the winner if scores are otherwise equal after playing the two legs- home and away. By introducing this rule, the ISL joins numerous prestigious Cup tournaments to follow this rule during the knockout stages.
With the semi-finals of the fourth edition set to kick-off on Wednesday, the rule comes into immediate effect. The new entrants Bengaluru FC will meet FC Pune City in the two-legged semi-finals, while the 2015 champion Chennaiyin FC will face FC Goa for a place in the finals.
With the introduction of the away goal, the ambiguity in choosing the finalists will be put o rest. Indeed, it is a welcome move for the ISL as the fans were desperate for this change. Hope this is just the beginning of the ISL's journey in becoming India's top-tier football in the future.