Karachi: KMC football stadium (also known as CDGK Stadium), one of the most prominent venues in Pakistan football history where more than 1000 international and national level matches have been played in the past, has been deprived of any national-level football competitions for the past several years.
Neither of the major domestic events like the Pakistan Premier League, PFF League, National Challenge Cup, National Women Championship, National U19, U17 and U14 championships is being organised at the KMC stadium for the past four years.
This year the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) has announced the schedule of 9th Pakistan Premier League, which will start from September 5, and at least six Karachi-based football teams have been given the right to organise home ground matches in the city at KPT football stadium, Peoples Sports Complex, AK football ground, and Sharafi Goth stadium, but KMC stadium has been overlooked yet again, sources said.
The sources mentioned that Aga Khan football ground has no seating facility for spectators but still it has been included. The KMC stadium is perhaps the only football venue in the country where more than 1000 international and national level domestic football matches have been played in the past and teams of Russia, Iran, China, Turkey, Kuwait, Korea, Japan, Germany and USA have played here.
Besides, it is the one place where football activity continues for at least 10 months in a year, 12 hours every day. The ground remains open from 7am in the morning till 10pm in the evening for any department or club to train or play matches, but due to personal disliking of PFF officials the domestic football matches are not being organised here.
Though the PFF is yet to give any official reason for ignoring KMC stadium, insiders have revealed that once in the presence of PFF president Faisal Saleh Hayat, in a domestic football match at KMC football stadium, some people held a protest with banners and slogans against the federation on some issue which annoyed him and since then the process of neglecting the stadium started which still continues.
When this scribe contacted PFF secretary Ahmed Yar Lodhi, he said that PFF has no objection regarding the holding of domestic matches at KMC sports complex.