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Players Association Messed Up Unnecessarily: Sikkim Football Association Calls Out Santosh Trophy Boycott

Sikkim Football Association and Football Players Association of Sikkim have been embroiled in controversy over their teams boycotting of Santosh Trophy earlier this year.

News18 Sports

Updated:October 24, 2019, 2:09 PM IST
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Players Association Messed Up Unnecessarily: Sikkim Football Association Calls Out Santosh Trophy Boycott
Sikkim Football Association (Photo Credit: SFA/Facebook)

The ongoing stand-off between the Sikkim Football Association (SFA) and the Football Players Association of Sikkim (FPA Sikkim), took another ugly turn when SFA president Menla Ethenpa called the move of the FPAS "totally against Sikkimese footballers and Sikkim football".

Speaking at a press conference for the 39th edition of All India Governor's Gold Cup, Ethenpa said that, "being a football body FPAS has officially not registered under SFA, so we won't entertain their matter. They claim to work for the welfare of the players but their steps of boycotting Santosh trophy and the local tournaments are totally against Sikkimese footballers and Sikkim football. Also, the welfare of players is associated with the clubs, not SFA. They messed up with SFA unnecessarily."

Ethenpa also termed FPAS president Nirmal Chettri's decision of the boycott was unethical and illogical.

"Senior players like him should have understood the value of participating in the Santosh trophy. Our players missed a golden opportunity of showing their talent and getting jobs in the future," Ethenpa was quoted as saying by a report in the EastMojo.

At the press conference, it was announced that the All India Governor's Gold Cup will be held at the Paljor Stadium in Gangtok from November 1-12, with a total of 12 teams participating, including 3 local teams.

Mohammedan Sporting Club (Kolkata), ATK (Reserves), Jamshedpur (Reserves), Punjab Police XI, Army (Red), BSS Sporting Club, Eastern Railways, Khidderpore Sporting Club, East Bengal Academy, Sikkim Himalayan SC, Sikkim Police and State Sports Academy - are the 12 teams likely to take part according to Ethenpa.

Ethenpa sounded hopeful that the three local clubs will honour their participation and not back out at the last moment.

"They have agreed in participating and we are hopeful they won't back off," Ethenpa said.

Notable absentees though from the tournament this time around will the non-participation from Nepalese clubs.

On the issue, Ethenpa said, "We tried our best to reach out to the clubs in Nepal through All Nepal Football Federation but they did not respond to us. At the last minute, they agreed on sending one new team to which we disagreed due to the delay in confirmation from their side".

"We know it is not good news for the football lovers but the absence of Nepal football clubs should not hold them back as we have top teams from the country and three local teams to display a good show," he added.

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