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East Bengal faces fine and points deduction in U-17 Youth League age fraud scandal

East Bengal faces a Rs 60,000 fine and potential point deductions in the AIFF U-17 Youth League for fielding an overage player with multiple registrations.

East Bengal faces fine and points deduction in U-17 Youth League age fraud scandal
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East Bengal faces suspension in U-17 Youth League after age fraud scandal

By

The Bridge Desk

Updated: 12 Jan 2024 8:29 AM GMT

East Bengal, the Kolkata-based football club, is set to incur a Rs 60,000 fine and potential point deductions after allegedly fielding an overage player in the ongoing AIFF U-17 Youth League as per a report from News 9. The All India Football Federation (AIFF) is yet to finalize the player's suspension period.

The controversy arose when it was discovered that the player in question had two names registered in the AIFF’s Central Registration System (CRS), a mandatory online database for players and clubs participating in organized football. The player participated in East Bengal's tournament opener against Mohammedan SC on December 14, which they won 3-2.

East Bengal currently leads Group B with 16 points from seven matches. The allegations came to light when traditional rivals Mohun Bagan lodged a complaint after a 0-4 loss in the 'junior Kolkata Derby' on December 16, where the player was an unused substitute.

Mohun Bagan accused East Bengal of including a player who had previously played for them in the U-13 League in 2017-18 and had participated in the Calcutta Football League for various clubs. The AIFF, after an investigation, confirmed the player's multiple registrations in the CRS.

As a consequence, East Bengal will have to forfeit points from matches where the overage player participated. The fate of the player remains pending, with a likely suspension of four years on the horizon.

East Bengal responded to the allegations, stating that they have received communication from the federation and expressed commitment to implementing stricter measures to prevent age-fraud accusations in the future.

A club director mentioned to News 9, “If the player submits inaccurate documents that are widely accepted everywhere, then we don’t have any responsibility. All we can do is tighten our checking methods before registering any player.”

The AIFF, aiming for fair play in the 2023-24 edition of the Youth League, is expected to implement stricter checking methods to prevent similar incidents and maintain the integrity of youth football competitions. The league features a total of 32 teams divided into eight groups, commencing on December 13.

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