Known for being the first ever Indian to score in the coveted Indian Super League, Balwant Singh is an Indian footballer born in Hoshiarpur, Punjab on 15 December 1986.
Balwant began as a midfielder and last played as a forward in the Indian Super League for Mumbai City FC in the 2017-18 season. In the upcoming 2018-19 season he will represent Kolkata based franchise ATK. Balwant is a good header of the ball, and can also play on the wings, having a knack of getting around defenders to pounce on chances.
He has also played for the Indian national team and was considered as a late bloomer.
Balwant Singh began his footballing career at Mahilpur Football Club in 2005. He stayed there for two years before moving to JCT Mills youth team.
His performances earned him a breakthrough to the senior side where he would play an important part for 3 years, scoring 7 goals from 38 appearances in the league.
Balwant received a short training trip to Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2010 along with 5 other JCT players.
His career continued on the same path as he joined other clubs and kept his scoring skills in the fray.
Balwant Singh has represented the following teams - Mahilpur FC, JCT Mills, Salgaocar, Churchill Brothers, Mohun Bagan, Chennaiyin FC and Mumbai City FC.
Balwant began his senior professional career at JCT Mills in 2008 and made his club debut in the league in the same year.
He scored his first goal for the club on 28 September 2008 against Mahindra United in a massive 7-1 win.
Balwant then made his international debut on 17 February 2010 for the reserve side of the Indian team against Kyrgyzstan in the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup.
His debut for the senior side came on 19 August 2017 against Mauritius in the Hero Tri-Nations Cup where he scored the winning goal.
Rise to glory
Balwant Singh started playing for the Indian national team in 2010, which was first for the reserve side.
He was substituted after 79 minutes in his first match by Jeje Lalpekhlua, who would turn out to be another Indian star in the rise of football in the country. In spite of making his debut at the age of 22, and then going on to play for the U-23 side, Balwant began playing his best football only in his late twenties.
Balwant played a regular role in the U-23 side and scored his first goal for them in the 2010 Asian Games against Singapore in a 4-1 win.
This goal was also his first international goal. Seven years forward, Balwant made his senior side debut against Mauritius and achieves the honour of scoring a winner on his debut.
He also helped the Blue Tigers to a 2-0 win against Macau by scoring a brace in the Asian Cup Qualifying rounds. He received the FPAI Best Indian Player Award in 2013-14.
Balwant has made 4 appearances for the senior Indian team and scored 3 goals.
Balwant’s club career began at JCT Mills where he made 49 appearances in all competitions and scored 11 goals. In spite of his role in the team, JCT failed to win silverware during his time there.
In 2011, Balwant moved to Salgaocar and won his first title, the I-League. He made only 5 appearances in 2 seasons and failed to score a single goal.
Balwant’s goalscoring record took a giant leap in 2013 when he joined Churchill Brothers SC and scored 17 goals in 32 appearances. He won his second Federation Cup with them, the first one being with Salgaocar.
His superb performances earned him a move to Bengal giants Mohun Bagan in 2014 where he won the I-League in the debut season. He made a total of 55 appearances and scored 16 goals.
Balwant then went on loan to ISL side Chennaiyin FC where he won the title in 2015. He also became the first ever Indian to score in the ISL. Balwant SIngh currently plays for Mumbai City FC where he has 6 goals and an assist from 12 games.