The apex body has extended the deadline for Club Licensing which comes as a good news for East Bengal…

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has decided to extend the deadline for submitting the necessary documents for AFC Club Licensing to November 13 for the 2020-21 season.

This is certainly good news for East Bengal as the Red and Golds will now get some additional time to complete their licensing process for the upcoming season.

The All India Football Federation (AIFF) had opened up the club licensing system for the 2020-21 season on July 14. The Club Licensing Application Pack (CLAP) was sent to all eligible clubs and they were asked to submit a signed copy of the Club Licensing agreement which is a declaration that they are ready to undertake the initiative of procuring a license. 

At that time, East Bengal had just exited from their previous Joint Venture (JV) with Quess Corp and had applied for the license in the name of East Bengal Club Private Limited.

Thereafter, the Red and Golds roped in Shree Cement as their new investors in September and had entered into a fresh Joint Venture where they had 24 per cent stake. A new company has been formed, Shree Cement East Bengal Foundation, who currently have the sporting rights. East Bengal Club Private Limited had to first transfer the sporting rights back to East Bengal Club after which it was transferred to the new company.

It was only after the transfer of sporting rights, the new company could apply for the club licensing with AFC. As the entire process could only happen by end of September, there was a concern for the Red and Golds if there was enough time for them to procure a license.But the extension of the deadline comes as a huge relief for the Red and Golds.

Shree East Bengal Foundation had picked up the bid paper to participate in the Indian Super League (ISL) and has also been approved by Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL) who run the league. 

They have already announced former Liverpool legend, Robbie Fowler, as the club’s new manager and have also confirmed the signing of their first foreigner in Australian defender Scott Neville, who joined the club on a year-long loan.

They have also made some important Indian signings like Jeje Lalpekhlua and Narayan Das.

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