Roundup: Premiership Football League 2016
Author – Akshay Shetty
(Reading time ~ 3 mins)
This year’s Premiership Football League turned out to be a grand success with African United emerging as the winners of the cup of glory. In its 2nd edition, PFL has provided the football players of Mumbai a bigger & better platform to showcase their skills and talents. It has set a new standard for local competitive leagues in terms of quality of venue, management of the league, talent pool and audience participation. Vimal Arora – a passionate footballer, organizer of PFL and owner of Navi Mumbai Football Club says ‘I just want to provide quality football and quality infrastructure to those who are deprived of it and am looking forward to get PFL as one of the most prestigious tournaments in India’ As an individual he looks forward to bringing a change in the current sports culture and providing better opportunities to the sports community. And his efforts in doing so have surely set new benchmarks in the game of football around Mumbai.
Here are the highlights of the 3-month league:
African Utd vs Mubarak Hunters FA seemed to be the most anticipated match during the qualifying matches as African Utd were standing at 21 points just one point behind Arsenal Mumbai. It was a win win situation for Africans Utd as a draw or win could have qualified them for the quarter finals pushing Arsenal Mumbai to the third position but a loss would have got them out of the league. Moreover, Mubarak Hunters FA one of the best teams in the league had not lost any match in the entire league. Africans Utd managed to get a draw against Mubarak Hunters FA and qualified for the quarters but what came as a surprise was when they won the semifinals against Mubarak Hunters FA with the final score of 1-0.
Farukh Chaudhary the striker from Ambernath Utd was awarded as the top Scorer of the league with 15 goals in just 8 matches. He entered late in the league as he was already playing for Lonestar Kasmhir FC. His unbelievable double hat trick during Ambernath Utd vs ABFC Mumbra was admired by many. Currently he has been signed by Kerala Blasters in ISL and we are looking forward to see him playing and competing with the elite players from all around the world
Arsenal Mumbai has proved to be a tough team in the league and they could have turned out to be the quarter finalist only if Africans would have lost to Mubarak Hunters FA in their last qualifying match in the league. Though they missed the quarter finals by just one point they played remarkably well throughout the tournament and Spencer Johnson the mid fielder from Arsenal Mumbai was awarded as the most creative player from the tournament. Being a mid-fielder he did exactly what was needed distributing the ball perfectly to the strikers and defenders and also taking the lead many a times. He played a crucial role in getting his team in the top 3 of the table rankings.
NMFC the organizing team of PFL performed outstandingly in the league. Though they got defeated in the quarter finals against Ambernath Utd the fact that their team comprised of all young players against the elite players of Ambernath Utd cannot be ignored. One such name which shined throughout all their matches was Paresh Chaudhary the goalkeeper of NMFC. He played a vital role in bringing his team to the quarter finals of the league and hence was awarded as the best goalkeeper of the tournament. We saw some extra ordinary saves and perfect positioning from this young player against many of the elite teams in the league. Looking at his skills anyone could easily state that the kid has got a bright future ahead.
The finale between Ambernath Utd vs Afrcian Utd had a lot of breathtaking moments. Farukh Chaudhary the sensational striker of Ambernath Utd missed a chance to score just by a few inches as the ball hit the pole during the first few minutes of the game. Though the game was highly dominated by the last year winners and defending champions Ambernath Utd they weren’t able to score despite of creating multiple chances. African Utd striker Elke emerged as a life saver for them when he scored at the closing moments of the 1st half of the game. The game changed in the second half as Ambernath Utd’s multiple attempts to score created a lot of pressure on African Utd and Fransico Salin from Ambernath Utd finally managed to score a goal for his team. At the final whistle, the match was tied at 1-1and went on to penalties. African Utd who were in the 3rd position last year became the ultimate champions this year as Ambernath Utd failed to score 2 penalties. The final score in the penalties was 3-4.
We congratulate all the teams for putting up a great spectacle and competing well. Here are the scores of all the matches with detailed statistics.
spyn was the proud marketing partner for the 3 month football extravaganza. spyn covered the tournament for all 3 months, handling the social media, providing the tournament and its fans an online score card with regular score updates on Facebook and our website. It also gave out weekly prizes like ‘spyn player of the week’ and ‘spyn fan of the week’.
It was an honour to be a part of Premiership Football League, a tournament which is making immense contribution to the local football scene, helping the sport take giant strides in Mumbai.
Image Credits : Premiership Football League