Sunil Chhetri Biography
Captain of the Indian national team, Sunil Chhetri is an Indian professional footballer who was born on 3rd August 1984 in Secunderabad, India.
He plays as a striker for the Indian national team and Indian club Bengaluru FC. He is the most-capped player, and also the all-time top goalscorer for the India national team.
From a very young age, Chhetri started taking part in various football tournaments.
Chhetri began his professional career in 2002 at Mohun Bagan. He then represented JCT, Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer.
He also represented Bengaluru FC from 2013 to 2015. During the 2015 Indian Super League, Chhetri was picked up by Mumbai City for Rs. 1.2 crores, making him the most expensive Indian player at the auctions.
On 30th March 2004, Chhetri represented the Indian U-20 team from the first time in the 1-0 victory over the Pakistan U-23 team in the 2004 SAF Games in Pakistan.
India defeated Cambodia 6-0 in Chhetri's first international tournament which was the 2007 Nehru Cup in which Chhetri scored 2 goals.
His good form continued and eventually became one of the best Indian footballers.
Rise to Glory
It was with the national team that Chhetri gained fame and made a name for himself. He helped India win the Nehru Cup 3 times in 2007, 2009 and 2012 as well as the 2011 SAFF Championship.
During the 2008 AFC Challenge Cup, he was also one of India's best players as he helped India win the tournament. The team qualified for their first AFC Asian Cup in 27 years in the process.
At the 2011 AFC Asian Cup, he led India in scoring during their short-lived campaign with two goals.
In 2002, Chhetri started his club career with Mohun Bagan and after 3 years, he moved to JCT where he scored 21 goals in 48 games, the most he has scored for any side in his career.
In 2010, he became the third player from the subcontinent to go abroad when he signed for the Kansas City Wizards of Major League Soccer.
Before going back abroad, he played for Chirag United and Mohun Bagan. Sporting Clube de Portugal of the Primeira Liga signed Chhetri where he played for the club's reserve side.
He also represented Bengaluru FC and Mumbai City FC in the Indian Super League.
For the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup qualification which took place in Malaysia, Chhetri was named as the national team captain. He managed to score 21 goals after donning the captain's armband and helped his side win many titles.
Chhetri has also been named AIFF Player of the Year five times in 2007, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2017. With 56 goals in 97 appearances, he is also the all-time top goalscorer for the India national team, and also he is the most-capped player.
Other than Arjuna award in 2011, he was also honoured with FPAI Indian Player of the Year in 2009 and 2018, AFC Challenge Cup Most Valuable Player in 2008, SAFF Championship Player of the Tournament in 2011, Hero of the I-League for the 2016–17 season and the Hero of the Indian Super League for the 2017–18 season.