ISL 2020: Franchisees get ‘broad overview’ of COVID-19 guidelines

Football Sports Development Limited is gearing up to deliver the seventh Indian Super League season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic challenges. The league organisers are devising standard operating procedures for the season to be played behind the closed doors.

The ISL has reportedly shared a “broad overview” of its COVID-19 guidelines with franchises and everyone involved with the event. The standard operating procedures will require the teams to provide daily health updates through an app. The app will become functional during the preseason.

The ISL Season 7 will be played from November 2020 to March 2021 at a single city, may be across two  venues, either in Kerala or Goa.

Also Read: AIFF considering single cities for ISL, I-League venues

An anonymous ISL source has confirmed to national news agency PTI that the league organisers are “planning to create a Health App for players support staff, club management, league officials including match commissioners and referees, doctors. Everyone who is going to be in the bubble”.

“They all will have to daily provide their health updates through this app, starting from pre-season which is roughly October. There will be approximately 1500 to 2000 people monitored by the league’s medical team on a daily basis.”

In October, a virtual ISL workshop will be conducted and the clubs will be “presented with all the details, rules and regulations” regarding the staging of the event. The venue will be finalised on August 7.

The ISL is expected to release its full fixtures for the 2020-21 season by August 31.

Taking a cue from the ongoing England-West Indies Test series, it has already been decided that the teams will stay put in a bio-secure environment.

According to the source, the 10 competing franchises will be divided into three groups with Group A comprising four teams and Group B and C consisting of three sides each.

All players and support staff will be required to return negative for COVID-19 tests in their home city 48 hours before arriving in the host city.

They will be tested on arrival and will have to spend some time in isolation even if the result is negative.

Owing to the coronavirus outbreak, the previous ISL final between ATK and Chennaiyin FC was played behind closed doors at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa on March 14.

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