With Football becoming a trending sport in India widely watched by the young generation, the Indian footballers also serve as an inspiration to many budding footballers. The All India Football Federation controls the India national football team. Under the global jurisdiction of FIFA and governed in Asia by the AFC, the Indian football team is a part of the South Asian Football Federation too.
Here is list of ten Indian Footballers who are famous in India for their play, skills, moves and records.
Followings: Instagram 861 K | Twitter 1.56 M
Born on 3 August 1984, Sunil Chhetri is one of India’s best produce in the world of football. The striker is a captain to both the Indian national football team and the Indian Super League side Bengaluru FC. With almost a million followers on Instagram, he is famously known as Captain Fantastic.
Chhetri scored the 2nd highest number of goals in international matches among active players after Cristiano Ronaldo. Also the most-capped player and top goalscorer for the Indian national team, with 67 goals in 107 matches.
Last year, his twitter message aimed at attracting football fans to stadium was well received and appreciated.
This is nothing but a small plea from me to you. Take out a little time and give me a listen. pic.twitter.com/fcOA3qPH8i— Sunil Chhetri (@chetrisunil11) June 2, 2018
Being a youth icon, Sunil Chhetri serves as a role model to the budding footballers of the country.
Followings: Instagram 53.3 K | Twitter 16.1 K
Bhaichung Bhutia is considered among one of the brightest gems of Indian football. Born in Sikkim on 15 December 1976, Bhutia cam to be known as India’s best striker of his time. He has nicknamed as the Sikkimese Sniper because of his unique shooting skills in football.
Bhutia is famous not only for his great performances on the field but also off the field. He received public’s attention after winning the reality television show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, then because of his controversy with his then-club Mohun Bagan. Also, he was the first Indian athlete to boycott the Olympic torch relay to support the Tibetan independence movement. He also has a football stadium named after him as a honour of his contribution to Indian football.
Bhutia also has Bhaichung Bhutia Football Schools running under his name football coaching is offered through 49 training centres all around the country to kids between the ages of 5 and 17. He has bigger plans to open similar training centres all across India.
Followings: Instagram 217 K | Twitter 136 K
Sandesh Jhingan is one of the most followed footballers around, considering he has served as a captain of Kerala Blasters FC of the Indian Super League and the India football team. He plies his trade as defending player.
Born on 21 July 1993 in Chandigarh, Jhingan got his football training at the St. Stephen’s Academy. While his training was going on, he helped the side reach the South-East Asian finals of the Manchester United Premier Cup. He represented Chandigarh state team at the under-19 level, and won the B.C. Roy Trophy. In the recent Intercontinental cup 2018, Jhingan played a must watch game against Kenya and was honoured with the hero of the match award. Since then, he gained popularity and limelight.
4Gurpreet Singh Sandhu
Followings: Instagram 93.7 K | Twitter 50 K
Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, born on 3 February 1992 is an Indian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Indian club Bengaluru FC. He captained a friendly match between India and Puerto Rico on 3 September,a match India won 4–1.
He is the first Indian player to play a competitive match for the first team of a top-division European club and also. Sandhu is the fifth Indian after Mohammed Salim, Baichung Bhutia, Sunil Chhetri and Subrata Pal to play professionally in Europe.
His performances has earned him respect, popularity and love. With climbing ladders towards a brighter career, he has put in superb displays. It is no wonder that Indian football is on the upward trajectory and Gurpreet has played his role in the ascent.
Followings: Instagram 180 K | Twitter 37.6 K
Jeje Lalpekhlua is another famous Indian footballer who plays for both Chennaiyin and the India national football team.
Being the second highest Indian goalscorer in the Indian Super League since its inception, he earned limelight and success. Coming from a family of footballers, he always had interest in this sport. He plays as the centre-forward and is also capable of playing from the wings. He is a right-footed player.
His career took off in 2015 when he won the I-league with Mohun Bagan and the Indian Super League with Chennaiyin. In the same year, he was named the FPAI Football Player of the Year.
He played important roles in India’s 2011 SAFF Cup championship victory. He scored three crucial goals in the 2015 SAFF Cup including an equalizer in the final as India won 2–1 after extra time.
With popularity overtaking his career, he became a youth icon in no time. His social media handles are filled with love from fans and followers.
Followings: Instagram 51.9 K | Twitter –
Telem Jackichand Singh is another example of India’s rising football talent. The player, born on born on 17 March 1992, plays as a midfielder for FC Goa in the Indian Super League.
Last year, he gained limelight because of his performances. His ISL move from Kerala Blasters to FC Goa has proved its worth and he found the football style of Sergio Lobera much suited to his dedication.
Recently, he became a part of the Indian squad that Stephen Constantine had trusted for the job in the Asian Cup.
He revealed his greatest inspiration by mentioning his fellow Manipuri striker Renedy Singh. He further told that he was named after the famous actor Jackie Chan, who is also his role model. Coming from a descent family background, his friends and family call him Jacki. He is married has a three-year-old son named Civic. The names of his wife and son are inked on his right arm – Beauty and Civic.
Followings: Instagram 115 K | Twitter 784
Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem, born on 4 July 2000, an Indian footballer who currently plays for Kerala Blasters as a goalkeeper in the ISL. He earned limelight after his wonderful performance in goalkeeping at the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup held in India. He did a great move after the U-17 World Cup.
Dheeraj went under the wings of David James in Kerala Blasters. David mentored him which gave him the confidence to become the number one goalkeeper for Kerala in the ISL. He gets better with every match that he plays. His greatest performance for the Kerala Blasters in 2018 could not be revived but David managed to bring a friendly approach towards the ISL.
Followings: Instagram 21.5 K | Twitter –
Pronay Halder is an amazing Indian footballer who plays for ATK in the Indian Super League. Born on 25 February 1993 in Barrackpore, West Bengal, he started his youth career with Tata FA in 2007 and got graduated in 2010.
Haider’s attacking and defending skills from midfield has led to his comparison to Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho. He is also admired for his versatile play (defence and midfield) which was witnessed in his 2016 Indian Super League season at Mumbai City FC.
The former Mumbai City FC coach Alexandre Guimarães called him as being “physically strong, a good passer and technically gifted”.
Famous on Twitter and Instagram, he has a great fan following which includes mostly youngsters. He is definitely a role model for many children.
Kumam Udanta Singh is an Indian professional footballer born on 14 June 1996 who plays as a primary winger for Bengaluru FC in the ISL and the India national football team.
His recent performances were a descent. In 2017-18, he scored 3 goals for Bengaluru FC, who were competing for the first time and became runners up. In 2018–19 season, he
scored 5 times and assisted 4 times for far. He led his team Bengaluru FC to reach ISL final second time in a row. He is a great boon for his team and a famous footballer around the country.
Followings: Instagram 61 K | Twitter –
Ashique Kuruniyan gained limelight after his excellent performance for FC Pune City. He played for the national team last year and since then there are only signs of improvement. He played wonderfully in Inter-continental Cup and earned International gaming experience.
Ashique attracted maximum audience on field with his efforts despite the fact that his team lost. Despite not having a great body, Kuruniyan doesn’t hesitate from taking on opponent defenders.