No prize money for women's football national champions Tamil Nadu
India is a land where football is giving serious competition to cricket, with regards to fan following. The advent of the Indian Super League has further aided the process, with a number of international stars being lured to India with large prize money on offer.
It seems to be a completely different scenario, though, when it comes to women’s football. The recently-concluded Women’s National Championships saw Tamil Nadu clinch the title this year, after they beat Manipur 2-1 in the summit clash.
However, the Tamil Nadu women barely received any prize money for this victory. Forward Indumathi was one of the highest earners in the side, bagging Rs 25,000 for good performances in the quarterfinal and the final, while Indrani got Rs 10,000 for her performance in the semifinals.
Apart from these, the players did get a daily allowance from the All India Football Federation (AIFF), and fares for their travel to and from Cuttack, Odisha, where the tournament was held. However, they are only said to have been given second-class train fares, while in reality they went to Cuttack on first-class train tickets and came back via flights.
When asked for clarification regarding these issues, AIFF said to Sportskeeda that the federation does not offer any collective prize money to the teams for this tournament.
The only cash rewards that the players can reap are the individual prize money, of which around Rs 35,000 went to Indumathi and Indrani, collectively.
Meanwhile, the men’s football tournaments and leagues, over the years have become lucrative affairs. The cash-rich ISL offered Rs 8 lakh to the winners Atletico de Kolkata (now ATK) last season. The winners of the official top division, the I-League, bag around the Rs 1 crore prize money, while the men’s state tournament Santosh Trophy champions bag Rs 5 lakh.