Southeast Asia Indonesia

OFFICIAL: Relegation to Stay in Place for 2021 Liga 1 Season

The Football Federation of Indonesia (PSSI) have announced on Wednesday that the upcoming 2021 Liga 1 Indonesia and Liga 2 Indonesia seasons will still have promotion and relegation being implemented.

The announcement came after weeks of speculation in regards of the promotion-relegation system for the upcoming Indonesian football season, with the PSSI floating an idea of holding a temporary relegation-less season that was reportedly supported by a number of Liga 1 and Liga 2 clubs.

“In discussion with all members of the PSSI’s Executive Committee, it has been decided that promotion and relegation will still be in place for the 2021 season,” said PSSI chairman Mochamad Irawan, as quoted from Bolalob.

Irawan had just attended an emergency meeting with the Executive Committee of the PSSI to discuss about how the 2021 Liga 1 and Liga 2 seasons should be conducted, with the results of the meeting being consulted with both FIFA and AFC. After hours of deliberation, it was finally decided that the usual pro-rel format to and from Liga 1 – 3 teams going down and 3 teams going up – will be retained for the 2021 season.

Previously the PSSI have mulled the idea of abolishing relegation for 2021 based on the concerns from a few clubs that the COVID-19 pandemic would affect their preparations for the upcoming season.

However, the idea was met with severe backlash from other clubs, pundits, and fans alike, who voiced their concern that the absence of relegation would not only reduce the quality of competition, but also encourages match-fixing.

In the end, the idea to abolish relegation was thrown out of the window completely on Wednesday, with relegation still on the cards for the 2021 Liga 1 season.

Once the emergency meeting was over, Irawan instructed newly-appointed secretary general of the PSSI, Yunus Nusi, to send a letter regarding the decision to retain relegation to all Liga 1 and Liga 2 clubs.

“The decision on the relegation matter is final,” said Irawan.