AIFF ban: Blasters cancel pre-season tour in UAE; Gokulam hopes for miracle in Tashkent

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Kerala Blasters / Gokulam Kerala

FIFA suspending AIFF, the national soccer federation, and the possible loss of its hosting rights for the Under-17 Women’s World Cup in October has put several footballers and clubs in a tough spot. Kerala Blasters, which left for UAE for pre-season games, announced cancelling their matches due to the ongoing rift between FIFA and AIFF.

On Wednesday, the Gokulam Kerala women's team was stranded in Tashkent, unable to play AFC Club Championship and forced to write to PMO requesting permission to take part in the competition.

The sports ministry soon intervened and requested AFC to allow Gokulam Kerala take part in the competition. Following this, AFC offered the team an extension of 48 hours in Tashkent. So, instead of taking the next flight back home, the team from India continued to stay in a country where it had gone with lots of hope.

Meanwhile, Kerala Blasters, which headed to UAE for the pre-season friendlies ahead of the new Indian Super League Season, stated that their games are cancelled.

"Due to the current ban by FIFA on the AIFF, our three pre-season matches are cancelled. The team will continue to train in Dubai for the time being, and alternative arrangements have already been made. The club is ensuring that the players have adequate exposure and facilities to have the team match ready for the upcoming Hero ISL season," -- Blasters management said in a statement.

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