KOZHIKODE: Last year, nearly 100 foreign players took part in the sevens football tourneys in the state taking home close to Rs 1.2 crore as remuneration. But the entire process of bringing in foreign players has been found to be illegal as they come to India on tourist visa.
This season too nearly 120 foreign players from African countries have arrived in the state to take part in sevens tournaments but without following any proper legal procedures.
Foreigner Regional Registration Officer (FRRO) K K Jayamohan said the foreign players for the sevens were coming after signing a proper contract that included remuneration package with the local clubs. “Once they enter into a contract, they need to come to the country on an employment visa,” he added.
“It’s a matter of concern. Players from African countries play in the tournaments by coming in with tourist visa,” he said.
“The transfer of players from one country to another should be through the FIFA Transfer Matching System - the online platform to record players’ transfer between clubs,” said Kerala Football Association secretary P Anilkumar.
According to the figures with the Kerala Sevens Football Association (KSFA), 120 to 150 players from Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, Sudan and Cameroon have arrived in Kerala to take part in sevens tournaments this season.
The players, according to Shameel P, a player of AYC Ucharakkadavu, a leading sevens football club in Malappuram, the foreign players were recruited by the clubs after signing a contract.