Indian Super League side FC Goa have got a breather ahead of ISL 2016 as the multiple-season ban levied on the owners of the team has been overturned, it was announced on Friday. The franchisee also has to shell out Rs. 6 crore to the organisers -- FSDL -- now, from the earlier amount of Rs. 11 crore levied on them as a penalty.
However, the biggest news for the team remains that they will not be docked the 15 points at the start of the next season, as was announced earlier.
The rulings were made in Mumbai as the independent jury members of ISL Regulatory Commission and ISL Appeals Panel comprising of former Chief Justice of Bombay High Court Kshitij Vyas met on Friday.
The team from Goa saw themselves get embroiled in a major soup as they boycotted the presentation ceremony of the ISL 2015 final, that saw them lose to Chennaiyin FC. FC Goa had also alleged that the ISL 2015 final against Chennaiyin FC was fixed.
Also, after the final, there was major embarrassment in store as the ISL side filed a police complaint against Chennaiyin FC skipper Elano Blumer, alleging that he had assaulted their co-owner Dattaraj Salgaocar and this lead to the Brazilian's arrest. However, videos from the ground later showed that the Brazilian midfielder was not involved in any kind of a scuffle.
Major points from the verdict on Friday:
Points docking of FC Goa Revoked
In response to FSDL's appeal against docking of 15 points of FC Goa ahead of ISL season 2016, the ISL Appeals Panel found merit in FSDL's argument "to keep football fans interest above all matters, and to provide a level field for all teams."
The ISL Appeals Panel in its judgement revoked the sanction on 15 points docked on FC Goa, thus allowing FC Goa to start their ISL 2016 campaign on par with other teams in the league.
Ban on FC Goa's owners lifted
ISL Appeals Panel has revoked the respective ban on two of FC Goa's owners, viz. Dattaraj Salgaocar and Srinivas Dempo. The decision was taken on the basis of the letter of regret submitted by the owners and Elano Blumer to the ISL Appeals Panel, terming the incidents as something that happened in the heat of the moment.
Since it was a first time offence and based on the regret letters received, the Appeals Panel has revoked the respective bans on the owners.
The Appeals Panel noted that players, club officials and all others associated with the league need to display behaviour that is an example for the fans and public.
FC Goa to pay Rs 6 crore to FSDL
Appeals Panel has reduced the FC Goa's financial penalty to Rs. 6 crore from the earlier Rs. 11 crore. The Appeals Panel also stated that this amount to be paid to FSDL, should be utilised for investments solely in grassroots development programmes for football in the country.
Appeals Panel also set aside Rs. 1 crore penalty levied on FC Goa to be paid to Chennaiyin FC as part of the latter's legal expenses.
(with inputs from press release)