The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) yesterday cancelled the remainder of the 2019-20 season after abandoning the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League, which was suspended on March 16 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Following an emergency meeting, the BFF executive committee declared the 12th edition of the league abandoned, scrapping promotion and relegation while cancelling the Independence Cup.
"In terms of reference, the professional football league committee [PFLC] does not have any right to determine the fate of a league. That's why we called for the emergency meeting. Before sitting for the meeting, we took opinions from the AFC regarding our league. Considering the opinion of the AFC and the BFF executive members, the meeting unanimously decided to abandon the 2019-20 league season as clubs played uneven matches before it was suspended," BFF senior vice-president Abdus Salam Murshedy told The Daily Star after the meeting.
Following the suspension of the league, the PFLC sat twice but could not reach a decision even though most clubs wanted a cancellation due to financial issues.
The PFLC referred the clubs' demand to today's executive committee meeting, where nine members were physically present while nine others were connected online.
"The clubs suspended their training camps to stay healthy while many other clubs released foreign players. So we thought we did not have enough time to resume the league because we do not know when we can come out of this. That's why the meeting decided to abandon the 2019-20 league and there will be no champions and no team would be relegated," Murshedy said.
It has been learnt that AFC did not give any suggestions to the BFF's enquires regarding the cancelation of the football league but the continental body said it would consider BFF executive committee's decision regarding the season, which prompted the game's local governing body to declare the season over.
Before the meeting, there was a clear debate among the clubs about next season's league. Some clubs wanted to play with only local players and others wanted to stick with also having foreigners.
Murshedy said that they wanted to start the next season from September or October this year, subject to conditions improvng.
"If the situation improves, the BFF election will take place and the new committee will approve the bylaws of the BPL and eligibility of foreign players," said Murshedy.