Reliance Foundation Development League Regional Qualifiers deliver exciting results
The National Group Stage of the Reliance Foundation Development League (RFDL) commenced this week across Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Imphal. Five teams each will be competing across the four zones in five rounds of matches including 40 games in total. Every team will play four matches each in the leg. The 20 teams have made it to the national qualifiers after breaking out of their respective groups from the regional qualifiers in which they played 10 games each.
The regional qualifiers delivered what it promised, offering some intriguing matches and many surprise results, making it an inclusive group of teams pitted against each other. The four groups have an exciting mix of ISL, I-League and SFA clubs competing for the ultimate silverware and the opportunity for international game exposure.
The top team from the respective group will qualify to play in the Next Generation Cup later next month.
Watch the recap of the qualifiers here: https://www.instagram.com/p/CrcZNP5ouwU/
South Region- LIFFA Trivandrum, Kerala Blasters, FC Goa, Sreenidi Deccan, and Bengaluru FC will be competing in the Bangalore leg for the qualifiers.
Bengaluru and Sreenidi had finished in the top two spots of their table in the regional qualifiers as they battled tough competition from the likes of Chennaiyin FC and even FC Bengaluru United. Both of them won six games out of the 10 that they played but Bengaluru ended up with 21 points in comparison to Sreenidi’s 19 as they lost only a solitary game whereas the latter was defeated thrice. FC Goa Asst Coach Gouramangi Singh on RFDL
- Similarly, LIFFA Trivandrum made it to the nationals by finishing second in the group that Muthoot FA topped in. The Blasters ended up in the third spot, just a place beneath LIFFA as they trailed their state rivals by two points. FC Goa was in sublime form in the regionals as they secured 26 points out of a maximum of 30 as they finished unbeaten in their qualifiers to make it to this stage of the tournament.
- LIFFA Trivandrum will take on the Kerala Blasters whereas FC Goa will square off against Sreenidi Deccan on April 26.
- In the second round, Bengaluru FC and the Kerala Blasters will take on the LIFFA Trivandrum and FC Goa respectively on April 29. Bengaluru will then lock horns with Sreenidi Deccan whereas LIFFA Trivandrum will play against FC Goa on May 2.
- The junior teams of the Indian Super League (ISL) clubs FC Goa and Bengaluru FC will faceoff on May 5 whereas Sreenidi Deccan and the Kerala Blasters play on the same day later on. Sreenidi and the Kerala Blasters will be playing against LIFFA Trivandrum and Bengaluru FC respectively on May 9.
All matches of the Bangalore leg will be held in the Bangalore Football Stadium (BFS).
North Zone Delhi Sudeva, Chawanpui, Garhwal, Chanmari and Muthoot FA are participating in the Delhi leg of the qualifiers.
- Sudeva and Garhwal were the two best teams in their respective groups in the regional qualifiers. They had 20 and 17 points to their name respectively as they warded off competition from the likes of RoundGlass Punjab FC and Rajasthan United FC. Similarly, Chawnpui and Chanmari earned 20 points each in their 10 games though the former piped the latter to the top spot basis their goal difference.
- Sudeva and Garhwal have already kicked off their campaigns by taking on Chawnpui and Chanmari respectively on April 23. Chanmari and Chawnpui are set to come up against Sudeva and Muthoot on April 26. The third round sees Muthoot playing against Chanmari and Sudeva facing Garhwal on April 29.
- Garhwal and Chanmari play against Muthoot and Chawnpui respectively on May 2 whereas the leg will round off with Chawnpui facing Garhwal and Muthoot squaring off against Sudeva on May 5.
All matches of the Delhi leg will be held in at Civil Lines.
East Zone- Imphal Shillong Lajong, Classic Football Academy, NorthEast United, SAI-RC and ATK Mohun Bagan have made it to the Imphal leg of the National Group Stage qualifiers.
- Shillong Lajong and the Highlanders were tied on points (24) during the regional qualifiers and that paved their way to the nationals. Classic had a good run as well, with 23 points in 10 matches whereas SAI-RC secured the third spot in the points table. ATK Mohun Bagan was part of the group that had East Bengal and Mohammedan SC and the Mariners were sandwiched between the other two Bengal-based clubs in the standings. Former Indian professional footballer Jeje Lalpekhlua hailing the contribution of RFDL
- SAI-RC had displayed a rather moderate form as compared to the rest of the teams in the nationals, as they got five victories in 10 matches and finished third in their group behind Classic and North Eastern Sporting Union.
- Shillong Lajong and NorthEast United have already kicked off their runs with matches against Classic and SAI-RC on April 24.
- The second round will take place on April 27 with NorthEast United and Classic taking on ATK Mohun Bagan and SAI-RC respectively. Next, Mohun Bagan will play SAI-RC and Shillong Lajong will take on the NorthEast United on April 30.
- May 3 will see Classic and ATK Mohun Bagan facing NorthEast United and Shillong Lajong respectively. The leg will conclude on May 6 with SAI-RC playing against Shillong Lajong and Classic squaring off against Mohun Bagan.
All matches of the Imphal leg will be held in the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Complex
West Zone- Mumbai- Reliance Foundation Young Champs, Ramthar Veng, Velsao SCC, Mumbai City FC and East Bengal are taking part in the Mumbai leg of the qualifiers
- Reliance Foundation Young Champs and Mumbai City FC were in the top two spots of their qualifiers, with the former winning all 10 of their games to finish with 30 points in the qualifiers. Velsao, part of the group with five other clubs from Goa, finished second behind the Gaurs though they were nine points behind the Gaurs in the qualifiers.
- Ramthar Veng were placed in the third spot in their regionals behind Chawnpui and Chanmari as they gave a close fight to the other two clubs and rounded off their campaign with only one point less (19) as compared to them (20).
- Ramthar Veg and Reliance Foundation Young Champs have kicked off their journey against Velsao SCC and Mumbai City FC respectively on April 25. East Bengal will be facing Ramthar Veng in the second leg and Reliance Foundation Young Champs will play against Velsao SCC in this stage of the competition on April 28.
- The third round will begin with Velsao SCC and East Bengal playing Mumbai City FC and Reliance Foundation Young Champs respectively on May 1. Ramthar Veng will then square off against RF Young Champs whereas East Bengal and Mumbai City FC will take on each other in the penultimate round on May 4.
East Bengal and Ramthar Veng will be playing each other in the final round against Velsao SCC and Mumbai City FC respectively on May 7.
All matches of the Mumbai leg will be held in the Reliance Corporate Park (RCP).