English | Dzongkha Sunday, May 16, 2021

Winners of district league get direct promotion to BPL, Bhutan Football Federation


May 3, 2021

The winners of the district leagues of Thimphu, Paro, Punakha, and Sarpang will directly play the country’s top division league, Bhutan Premier League (BPL), this year. This is after the Bhutan Football Federation (BFF) decides to do away with the conduct of Bhutan Super League 2021. The decision was made because of the current COVID-19 situation in the country.

Previously known as the Thimphu League, the Bhutan Super League is the country’s second division league where teams will feature to gain promotion to the Bhutan Premier League.

The BFF’s decision to do away with the Bhutan Super League this year means that Druk Lhayul FC from Thimphu, Rinpung FC from Paro, Gomo FC from Punakha, and Tali B FC from Sarpang district will earn themselves a direct entry to the country’s top division league.

Winning all their matches in the tournament, Druk Lhayul FC emerged as the champions of the Thimphu District League last week. 11 teams took part in the Thimphu District League this year. And Rinpung FC from Paro gets entry to the BPL. The Dzongkhag saw the highest team turn out with 14 teams taking part in the competition.

Likewise, the finals of the Sarpang District League were also held yesterday. Tali B FC has been crowned the champions after defeating Gyelsar FC 4-0. And Gomo FC will from Punakha district was crowned the champions of the tournament beating Rebel FC in the finals played on April 21. Eight teams took part in the Punakha District league.

They will now go head to head against Thimphu City FC, Ugyen Academy FC, Paro FC, Transport United FC, High Quality United FC, and Tensung FC in the upcoming league.

“Looking at the current COVID-19 situation in the country and the neighbouring countries, we are very much worried of another lockdown. If a lockdown happens, it will have a huge impact on our tournaments as Bhutan Premier League is one of the topmost prioritised tournaments that we have to play if we have to fulfil the AFC and FIFA mandates,” said Phuntsho Wangdi, the Head of Commercial and Communication at the BFF.

Sharing the information, he also added that the decision will not have any impact on the AFC qualifications.

“With the format change, there will be no implications on the AFC qualifications. BPL is the qualifier for the AFC cup. The champions of the BPL will play in the AFC cup qualifiers.”

He however added that the team from Gelegphu will have to find a home ground outside Gelegphu and stay away from their home for months considering the various COVID-19 restrictions in the district.

All clubs including the four new teams will get a BPL Club Subsidy of Nu 300,000 each, travel allowance, and a separate COVID-19 fund to help sustain their club and players.

The competition will be played in a double round format whereby all teams will get to play with each other two times. BPL is expected to begin by mid of this month.

Passang Dorji

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