AIFF will act strongly against clubs found guilty of match-fixing: Kalyan Chaubey | XtraTime

AIFF will act strongly against clubs found guilty of match-fixing: Kalyan Chaubey | XtraTime


Anilava Chatterjee, Qatar: The All-India Football Federation (AIFF) will impose strict sanctions for any clubs found guilty of match-fixing according to Kalyan Chaubey. The AIFF President along with Secretary Shaji Prabhakaran are right now in Qatar for the FIFA World Cup 2022. In an exclusive chat with Xtra Time, Kalyan Chaubey touched several topics related to Indian football. Here are the excerpts:

AIFF recently received a letter from CBI about alleged involvement of a few I League clubs in match fixing. Your thoughts?

Kalyan Chaubey: As an ex-footballer I would only say that match-fixing is a grave offence. All India Football Federation always has zero tolerance and there will be no compromise. All the clubs will be sent along with state associations. I am being told about the involvement of match fixing but nothing concrete. CBI has also asked for a report from us. I am having a discussion with secretary general on this issue. All I can say is if any clubs are found guilty of fraudulent activities, they will suffer severe sanctions.

You attended a program at the High Commission. How was the meeting with the corporates based in Qatar?

Kalyan Chaubey: Several Non-Resident Indians associated with the corporate sector are based here. I was glad to know that several of them are also associated with the infrastructural developments over the last few years for the FIFA World Cup. I have met them and asked them if they are willing to share their expertise so as to develop our infrastructure.

How has been the experience so far witnessing the matches here in Qatar 2022?

Kalyan Chaubey: Qatar has showcased to the world engineering standards to the highest level as we can see matches being staged in air-conditioning facilities. Did we ever imagined that football matches will be played controlling the temperatures and Qatar has made it possible. Even if the temperatures outside is 48 degree celsius, all the eight stadiums across the city are much cooler about 24 degrees. It has been made possible because of the scientific and technological brilliance. Talking about the architectural brilliance, Qatar has done a stupendous job. I was amazed to see the architecture at Lusail stadium. Qatar has proved to the world how money is channelized in a proper way to develop the infrastructure of a country.

Have you met any former legends of the game and what discussion did you had with them?

Kalyan Chaubey: I have been fortunate to meet several of them like Iker Cassius, Roberto Carlos, Cafu, Materazzi, Lothar Mathews, Ronaldo (Sr), Mascherano among others. David Beckham was also here. The FIFA legends have a big role as far as developing the game across the globe is concerned and they are doing a fantastic job.

You had a meeting with Chinese Sports Minister. What was the discussion about?

Kalyan Chaubey: I have been associated with Indian football for over 25 years. Like every Indian football lover, I also dream of seeing our country prosper. The relationship AIFF shares now with FIFA and AFC is very good. I am constantly in talks with them about improving infrastructure, academy, coaches, having a proper strategy so as to develop Indian football. I had a meeting today with Chinese Sports Minister. He was the Vice president of Olympic committee. China as you know are ranked around 70 in the world. We discussed how both nations can develop the sport. He invited me to visit China next September for a tournament. I also met the South Korea Football Federation President. I tried to gather knowledge how they staged a successful World Cup in 2002.

AIFF has decided to have promotions and relegations in ISL and I Leagues from next season. What are your thoughts as President?

Kalyan Chaubey: It will increase the competitiveness in I league. Previously, the I League clubs had no incentives even if they did well. For the betterment of football in the country, all stake holders including FSDL have taken a unanimous decision. We are also discussing about how we can stage the U-21 leagues, institutional leagues. We intend to start the University championships. There is a huge scope of developing the football in our country.

Recently AIFF had a tie-up with Saudi Arabia Football Federation which will see Santosh Trophy knock-out stages in the middle-east country. Did you have any similar discussions here with any national football associations?

Kalyan Chaubey: Yes, four matches of Santosh Trophy (two semi-finals, third place play off and final) will be held in Jeddah in February. I am confident this will be a major boost for our footballers. I had discussions about holding more FIFA friendlies with teams ranked higher than us. We are also planning to increase tri-nation tournaments. I attended the FIFA summit yesterday which was attended by Presidents of 211 football associations across the globe. I have had talks with them. It is a long process as you cannot expect overnight results. We need to set-up good relationships with higher ranked football playing nations. Why will a higher ranked football nation enter a tie-up with a nation ranked 106 in the FIFA rankings.

AIFF has decided to have promotions and relegations in ISL and I Leagues from next season. What are your thoughts as President?

Kalyan Chaubey: It will increase the competitiveness in I league. Previously, the I League clubs had no incentives even if they did well. For the betterment of football in the country, all stake holders including FSDL have taken a unanimous decision. We are also discussing about how we can stage the U-21 leagues, institutional leagues. We intend to start the University championships. There is a huge scope of developing the football in our country.



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Mohamed Elarby

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