It is finally here! The AIFF has finally announced the long awaited Indian Super Cup, branded as Hero Super Cup, which will be a knockout tournament comprising of I-League and ISL teams to replace the traditional Federation Cup. The tournament will be played in two phases – Qualifiers and Main tournament and yes, there will be telecast. Read on for more details.
20 Teams to participate in a knockout tournament
This will be the first time that I-League and ISL sides will go head to head in an official tournament. The tournament will have 20 teams overall – 8 in Qualifiers and 12 more direct entrants. The 12 direct entrants will be the 6 top placed teams each from the I-League and the ISL (league) and another 8 – bottom 4 from both leagues – will participate in the single leg qualifiers. The main tournament will be played by 16 teams in a knockout format.
|Minerva Punjab FC||Bengaluru FC||Indian Arrows||Mumbai City|
|Aizawl FC||Chennaiyin FC||Churchill Brothers||Delhi Dynamos|
|East Bengal FC||FC Goa||Chennai City FC||ATK|
|Mohun Bahan AC||Jamshedpur FC||Gokulam FC||NorthEast Utd.|
|NEROCA FC||Kerala Blasters FC|
|Shillong Lajong||FC Pune City|
Format and Schedule
The inaugural Indian Super Cup 2018 will be played in two phases i.e. Qualifiers and Main tournament. The single kelegg qualifiers are scheduled to from March 15th to March 16th and will feature 8 teams from which 4 will qualify for the main tournament joining 12 other teams starting from March 31st and running till April 25th 2018. The Kalinga Stadium in Bhuvaneshwar will be the host for the inaugural Super Cup.
QUALIFIERS SCHEDULE : HERE
The main round of the tournament will be knockout starting at the Round of 16s stage with the final slated for April 25th, ending a 6 month long Indian football season which started back in November 2017. The main tournament will begin on March 31st, 2018.
All teams can pitch a maximum of 5 foreigner players in their playing XI and can have 6 expats in their squad. The matches are expected to kick off at 5:00 PM and 8:00 PM slots with one match per day.
The draw for the main round of the Hero Super Cup will take place on March 9. The draw will ensure that the I-League and ISL sides are pitted against each other.
All the matches of the Hero Indian Super Cup 2018 will be aired LIVE and exclusively on the STAR SPORTS network and digitally on Hotstar.
The Super Cup is yet to commence and it is already one of the most anticipated domestic tournaments in Indian football in recent times. It is a direct ISL vs I-League and fans of both leagues can not be more excited than now!