All India Football Federation (AIFF) plans to introduce a new invitational multi-continental Champions Cup competition in August 2017. The newly proposed Champions Cup will be an annual affair played between four Countries, starting 2017.
The Champions Cup may possibly see participation from an Asian, African and a North American Country in addition to hosts India. AIFF with inputs from its marketing partner FSDL have studied the current National Team’s engagement and have devised a strategic National calendar program to ensure the Senior National Team train and play more often through the year, with special attention to increase the number of home games for the National Team.
Speaking on the newly introduced Champions Cup, Mr. Kushal Das, General Secretary, AIFF said: “We are quite excited on the prospect of introducing the new Champions Cup from 2017. AIFF and its partner FSDL have worked together over the last couple of months in studying the past and current year’s National Team engagements and how other countries are performing in Asia. The introduction of the Champions Cup is a result of conscious efforts at our end to ensure the National Team receives enough Training Camps, International Friendlies as well as competitive games. We are in talks with various Football Associations from AFC, CAF and CONCACAF. We envision to consistently climb through the FIFA Ranking charts by playing matches against good opponents.”
The National Team has won 11 of their last 13 games under Coach Stephen Constantine and this momentum puts them on a springboard to be ranked in top 100 by the end of this year. Indian National Team was ranked 132 in the rankings released by FIFA in March and with the recent wins against Cambodia and Myanmar, India is expected to be ranked just outside the top 100 in the rankings to be released in April.