The final round of the much - anticipated Super Cup will be played between March 31 and April 22 while the qualifiers for the same are slated to take place between March 12 - 31, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) said in a statement.
After the AIFF League Committee meeting at the Football House here, the members decided on the schedule and also said AFC Cup commitments of Aizawl FC and JSW Bengaluru FC (subject to their qualification to the Group Stages) will be kept in mind.
The venue is to be decided between Cuttack and Kochi after AIFF inspections.
"Federation Cup has been replaced by a much better tournament, the Super Cup.
A lot of excitement is expected as it will be a clash of the I league teams and ISL teams, " chairman of the league committee and AIFF senior vice - president Subrata Dutta told IANS.
The tournament will be played on a knock - out basis among 16 teams. The top six teams of the Hero I - League and the Hero Indian Super League would be granted a direct entry into the round of 16, while the bottom - placed teams from both the leagues would be playing a play - off to decide on the remaining 4 spots.
The number of foreign players to be registered for the Super Cup was discussed and a final decision will be taken after a discussion with all stakeholders.
Meanwhile, the 2nd division league will be divided into two phases - the preliminary and the final.
In the preliminary stage, 18 teams will be divided into three groups where all matches would be played on a home and away basis.
The winners of each group plus the best second - placed team would qualify for the final round.
However, if reserve teams of ISL clubs finish as winners or runners - up in any group, the position will be passed on to the next non - ISL team.
The final round will be played at a central venue, the winners of which would be promoted to the next tier of Indian football.
Each club can register a maximum of 3 foreign players for the 2nd division league out of which one player has to be a national of an AFC Member Association.
It was also decided to initiate age group leagues in the states under the state associations.
The top teams of each age group would be able to participate in the AIFF age group leagues.