The Durand Cup is unique in the sense the winners are awarded three trophies.
The 130th edition of the Durand Cup will take place in September and October. The third oldest tournament in the world was not held last season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With the pandemic ravaging the country, only the Indian Super League (ISL), I-League and the I-League Qualifiers took place, under restrictions and in a bio-bubble.
Earlier in August, Durand Football Tournament Society and the Additional Directorate General of Public Information, Indian Army both confirmed that the tournament will go ahead this year. The host city is Kolkata in West Bengal. The football-crazy city also played host to the 2019 edition.
The Durand Cup is unique in the sense the winners are awarded three trophies with two rolling ones (the Durand Cup and the Shimla Trophy) and the President’s Cup for permanent keeping.
As confirmed by ADG PI – Indian Army, Durand Cup 2021 will be held from September 5 to October 3, 2021 under the aegis of the Indian Army. This also falls in line with the upcoming season of the ISL and the I-League. The top flight of Indian football will start from November 2021 onwards, while the second tier will likely commence from December 2021.
Five Indian Super League (ISL) franchises and three I-League teams will be among 16 teams vying for Durand Cup 2021.
Besides top ISL franchises FC Goa and Bengaluru FC, the other clubs from India’s top division would be Kerala Blasters, Jamshedpur FC, and Hyderabad FC.
Challenging them would be the century-old Mohammedan Sporting of Kolkata, who were the first Indian winners of the Cup in 1940 and who would be leading a troika of I-League challengers including defending champions Gokulam Kerala and Sudeva Delhi FC of Delhi.
FC Bengaluru United and Delhi FC will represent the second division of the Indian football whereas two Indian Army teams (Red and Green), a team from Indian Air Force and Indian Navy, CRPF, and the Assam Rifles round-off the 16.
A total of ₹70 Lakh is up for grabs at Durand Cup 2021.
- Winners: ₹40 Lakh
- Runners-up: ₹20 Lakh
- Semi-finalists: ₹5 Lakh each
Three leading footballing venues of the State have been identified for the 130th Durand Cup, namely the Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) and the Mohun Bagan Club Ground in Kolkata as well as the Kalyani Municipal Stadium Ground, which has been regularly hosting national level football matches over the past few years.
The 16 teams taking part in Durand Cup have been divided into four groups of four teams each.
- Group A: Indian Air Force Football Team (Indian Air Force), Mohammedan Sporting Club (Mohammedan SC), CRPF, FC Bengaluru United (FCBU).
- Group B: Jamshedpur FC, Sudeva Delhi, FC Goa, Army Green Football Team (Army Green).
- Group C: Delhi FC, Indian Navy Football Team (Indian Navy), Kerala Blasters, Bengaluru FC.
- Group D: Assam Rifles Football Team (Assam Rifles), Army Red Football Team (Army Red), Hyderabad FC, Gokulam Kerala.
Group Stage Fixtures
The Group A fixtures are as follows:
- September 5, 2021 – 4:15 pm – Indian Air Force vs Mohammedan SC, VYBK
- September 6, 2021 – 3:00 pm – CRPF vs Bengaluru United, Kalyani
- September 9, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Indian Air Force vs FCBU, Kalyani
- September 10, 2021 – 3:00 pm – CRPF vs Mohammedan SC, Kalyani
- September 14, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Mohammedan SC vs FCBU, Kalyani
- September 14, 2021 – 3:00 pm – CRPF vs Indian Air Force, MB
The Group B fixtures are as follows:
- September 6, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Jamshedpur FC vs Sudeva Delhi, MB
- September 7, 2021 – 3:00 pm – FC Goa vs Army Green, VYBK
- September 10, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Jamshedpur FC vs Army Green, MB
- September 13, 2021 – 3:00 pm – FC Goa vs Sudeva Delhi, VYBK
- September 17, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Jamshedpur FC vs FC Goa, VYBK
- September 17, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Army Green vs Sudeva Delhi, MB
The Group C fixtures are as follows:
- September 8, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Delhi FC vs Indian Navy, MB
- September 11, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Kerala Blasters vs Indian Navy, VYBK
- September 15, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Bengaluru FC vs Kerala Blasters, VYBK
- September 18, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Delhi FC vs Bengaluru FC, MB
- September 21, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Bengaluru FC vs Indian Navy, VYBK
- September 21, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Delhi FC vs Kerala Blasters, MB
The Group D fixtures are as follows:
- September 9, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Assam Rifles vs Army Red, VYBK
- September 12, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Assam Rifles vs Hyderabad FC, MB
- September 12, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Gokulam Kerala vs Army Red, Kalyani
- September 16, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Gokulam Kerala vs Hyderabad FC, Kalyani
- September 19, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Army Red vs Hyderabad FC, VYBK
- September 19, 2021 – 3:00 pm – Assam Rifles vs Gokulam Kerala, Kalyani
The top two teams from each group will advance to the knockout stages.
- Quarter-finals: September 23-25, 2021
- Semi-finals: September 27-29, 2021
- Final: October 3, 2021
Durand Cup 2021 will not be telecast by any channel on television. However, the tournament will be streamed LIVE on the Addatimes app.