The Covid-19 pandemic has an adverse impact on Indian sports. However, the organizers of the Indian Super League (ISL) and the All India Football Federation (AIFF) have managed to find ways to work through the lockdown. The ISL 2020-21 season will be played behind closed doors in Goa, with all teams playing at the three chosen stadiums.
While the GMC Stadium in Bambolim will host the ISL 2020/21 season opener between ATK Mohun Bagan and Kerala Blasters, the Tilak Maidan Stadium in Vasco will host the second fixture between NorthEast United FC and Mumbai City FC.
The Tilak Maidan is one of three venues for the ISL this season in Goa along with the GMC and Fatorda. Over the years, the Tilak Maidan has been predominantly used for footballing purposes and is managed by the Sports Authority of India (SAI).
The ground serves as a home venue for Goan club Churchill Brothers, and has also played host to Indian Arrows, SC Dempo, and Sporting Club de Goa. Salgaocar Football Club used the Tilak Maidan as their home venue from 2006 to 2016. The ground has also hosted a bevy of cup matches, most notably from the Federation Cup in the recent past.
15 ISL matches to be played in the Tilak Maidan
With just three venues for the entire season, the Tilak Maidan will host 15 matches for the first leg of the competition. The first one will be played between NorthEast United and Mumbai City on the 21st of November, with the last match played between FC Goa and Hyderabad FC on the 30th of November.
Among the fixtures hosted at this venue, the most notable of the lot will be the Kolkata Derby between SC East Bengal and ATK Mohun Bagan on the 27th of November. This will be the first time the Kolkata Derby is being played in the history of the Indian Super League.