ISL 2017: ATK left out of Salt Lake Stadium concessions, East Bengal and Mohun Bagan reap benefits
Government of West Bengal with a major setback for ATK
What's the story?
The Government of West Bengal has decided to charge ISL side ATK heftily, while I-League giants East Bengal and Mohun Bagan have been given massive concessions for the use of the Yuba Bharati Krirangan Stadium, Kolkata (also known as Salt Lake Stadium) in the upcoming football season.
In case you didn't know
Yuba Bharati Krirangan hosted the mega finale of the recently concluded FIFA U17 World Cup 2017, along with nine other games. With the most attended venue tag and for being a successful host, FIFA was left with no choice but to heap praises on the Government of West Bengal and All India Football Federation (AIFF) for readying up such a wonderful venue.
The Yuba Bharati Krirangan was under renovation for the last two years, which forced ISL side ATK to play their 2016 edition home games at the Rabindra Sarobar Stadium. The renovation also forced East Bengal and Mohun Bagan to play their league games in the Barasat Stadium, Rabindra Sarobar Stadium and the Kalyani Stadium in the outskirts of Kolkata.
The high-voltage Kolkata Derbies were also shifted 800 km away, to the city to Siliguri in the last couple of seasons in the I-League and the Calcutta Football League.
Heart of the matter
The Government of West Bengal has decided to charge ATK a whopping Rs12 lakh per match for the usage of the stadium, while East Bengal and Mohun Bagan have not been charged any match fee by the government.
The I-League clubs now only need to pay Rs.15,000 per match for maintenance after the match.
East Bengal and Mohun Bagan are now set to hold discussions with the West Bengal government over the maintenance issues of the stadium, as the matches are in extremely close proximity since all the three teams playing at the same venue.
This will come up as an extreme relief for the I-League giants as they have been under financial strain for several months while ATK facing a major setback in terms of finances. East Bengal and Mohun Bagan can now capitalise on this turn of events to attract fans to the stadium by keeping the tickets as economical as possible.