New Delhi: In an interview with Indifoot, an AIFF official accused six I-league clubs of lying to All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel. The six accused clubs- Minerva Punjab, Mohun Bagan, East Bengal, Aizawl FC, Churchill Brothers and Gokulam Kerala, released a joint statement after meeting Federation President Praful Patel.
In the statement, the clubs said that they are not going to allow ISL clubs of getting a spot in the AFC Champions League preliminary round.
"The clubs are not in favour of giving away their rightfully earned and longstanding AFC Champions league spot till a proper plan for unified league is initiated."
"The United I-League clubs insist that the AFC Champions league spot must remain with the I-League as it is the I-League clubs that have (over the years) earned the AFC spots for India to enjoy today. The AIFF has already granted AFC Cup slot to ISL in 2017 and the same arrangement should continue till there is one unified league," the statement read.
The AIFF official said that these six I-league clubs had initially agreed to President Patel's proposed roadmap of allowing the Champions League spot to Indian Super League.
"The (six) clubs initially gave positive response when they met Praful Patel in unison to the rest (four) I-league clubs. But after that meeting the official statement released by them was different. They had agreed to allow AFC Champions League spot to ISL. In their statement, they said something else."
The official further accused the clubs of playing propaganda game, "These clubs are playing a propaganda game of their own. They are rebelling with a (selfish) motive."