Hyderabad FC, the winners of the 2021-22 Indian Super League (ISL) trophy, find themselves in a precarious situation even as the 2023-24 Indian football season kicks off on Thursday.
The ISL club, placed in Group E of the Durand Cup along with Delhi FC, Tribhuvan Army FC and Chennaiyin FC, are set to play their first game on August 6, but the team is yet to travel to Guwahati.
Sources close to the development confirmed to The Bridge that HFC find themselves in crisis due to the transfer ban imposed on them.
Transfer ban on HFC
The club was hit with a transfer ban on February 14, 2023, following a complaint from their former player Nestor Gordillo, who represented the club during the 2019-2020 season. This ban has then entirely limited the club's ability to register new players into their squad.
The transfer ban has been in place since November 2022 and is expected to last until the outstanding amount owed to the relevant creditor is paid and for the maximum duration of three entire and consecutive registration periods.
Despite the transfer ban, Hyderabad FC has announced many new player signings this season, including Vignesh Dakshinamurthy, Makan Chothe, and Jonathan Moya. However, their intention of strengthening the squad for the upcoming season could derail if no solution is found.
As the club remains unable to register these new players to their squad for the 2023-24 season, the role of these players in HFC's future assignments looks uncertain.
To make the matter worse, one of the club's former foreign recruits from the 2022-23 season has decided to approach FIFA over non-payment of salaries during his time with the club. The player has joined another ISL side this season. This could potentially lead to further sanctions or penalties for Hyderabad FC.