AFC objects to Rabindra Sarovar Stadium as Mohun Bagan’s venue

Kolkata, Jan 16 (IANS) Mohun Bagan were dealt a fresh blow on Monday when the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) deemed Rabindra Sarovar Stadium unfit to host the AFC Cup matches, sources said.

Bagan take on Colombo FC away for the first leg of their AFC Cup Preliminary round qualifying, with the home fixture slated to take place at the Rabindra Sarovar Stadium on February 7.

But AFC in a letter to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) informed that the ground cannot host the AFC Cup matches as it does not have bucket seats.

“They have sent a letter which says Mohun Bagan will not be able to host their AFC Cup matches at the Rabindra Sarovar Stadium due to not having bucket seats,” a source in the AIFF told IANS.

Bagan have not had it easy zeroing in on the venue with the National Green Tribunal (NGT) rasing an objection to hosting matches in the ecologically sensitive area.

After extended parleys which forced the former I-League champions to host their first match at Barasat Stadium within 48 hours’ time, the NGT eastern zone allowed Bagan to play their second game against Shillong Lajong at the floodlit Sarovar Stadium.

Now with AFC objecting on the venue, Bagan will have to look for other options to their AFC Cup games.