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27 Unknown Facts about Sunil Chhetri: All-Time Top Goalscorer for India

Sunil Chhetri (born 3 August 1984) is an Indian footballer, most capped player & also current captain of Team India. Unknown facts about him

Ankit Kanaujia
Last updated: 15.12.2017
Sunil Chhetri is India's best professional Footballer and current captain of Indian Football Team | Sports Social Blog

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Currently, Chhetri plays with Bengaluru FC, where he made 43 appearances, scoring 14 times.He played for the national team for the first time on June 12, 2005, against Pakistan. On 4 December 2017, Chhetri got married to his longtime girlfriend Sonam Bhattacharya.

Here are some pretty interesting and unknown facts about Sunil Chhetri:

  1. Sunil Chhetri was born to Nepalese-origin footballer parents on August 3, 1984, in Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh (now Telangana).

  1. He studied at Bahai School in Gangtok, Bethany’s in Darjeeling, Loyola School in Kolkata, and Army Public School, Dhaula Kuan in New Delhi.

  1. Chhetri took admission at Ashutosh College in Kolkata but gave up studies when he was in Class 12 after getting a chance to represent India at the Asian School Championships in Malaysia in October 2001.

  1. He has played for ten different clubs so far with the first being Delhi-based City Club, whom he joined as a 17-year-old. He has also represented Delhi in the Santosh Trophy.

  1. He started by playing for the Mohun Bagan AC and regularly scored goals for the club.

  1. In 2005, he was signed by JCT FC, where he emerged as a valuable player. He scored seven goals in the inaugural edition of the I-League, helping his team secure the third place.

  1. Chhetri was signed by East Bengal FC in 2008 and scored in his debut match for the club against Chirag United, in September, the same year He made a total of 14 appearances for the club and scored 9 goals.

  1. On May 22, 2009, he was signed by Dempo SC. The contract had a clause which permitted him to leave for trials abroad in the future if he wanted to.

  1. On August 2009, it was reported by Hindustan Times that he signed a three-year contract with English football club Queens Park Rangers but wasn't allowed a work permit by the British Government, as India was not in the top 70 of the FIFA World Rankings.

  1. Chhetri went international on March 24, 2010, when he signed for the American club Kansas City Wizards, becoming the third Indian to play outside South Asia and the first Indian to play Major League Soccer.

  1. Peter Vermes, the head coach of the Wizards, described Sunil as a 'Crafty Player' saying, "Technically he's very sharp, and he's a guy who has good attacking tendencies."

  1. On April 2010, he made his debut for the Wizards against Colorado Rapids in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup qualification game but was substituted later in the game for receiving a Yellow Card.

  1. He was a part of the Kansas City team when they played a friendly match against Manchester United; KC also defeated the club 2-1.

  1. He had a short stint in Chirag United, who signed him up in February 2011, and was later signed up by Mohun Bagan in July with a one-year contract.

  1. On February 2013, he was loaned by Churchill Brothers and debuted against Kitchee in the AFC Cup. He played for the club in the I-League, helping them win the tournament.

  1. He was the top scorer for India in the 2007 Nehru Cup and helped the team win the tournament with 4 goals.

  1. In the 2008 SAFF Championship, he scored 2 goals for India.

  1. He became the captain of the national team for the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup Qualification.

  1. On December 11, 2011, he scored 7 goals in the SAFF Championship,  emulating I M Vijayan's record of 6 goals.

  1. In the 2012 Nehru Cup, India emerged as the winner, with Sunil being the top scorer for the side, scoring 4 goals.

  1. Chhetri played for various age group teams of India, including the U-20 side at the SAF Games in 2004, but his first senior international goal came in a tour of Pakistan in 2005.

  1. Although his spell at Mohun Bagan was a great experience for Chhetri, it was at JCT under Sukhwinder Singh that he established himself as one of the best strikers in the country. He joined the Punjab-based club in 2005 and spent three memorable years there.

  1. There were many important performances at JCT including his display against Brazilian side Sao Paulo in the Super Soccer Series in 2007. But his form in the 2006-07 National Football League (NFL) stands out, as he scored 12 goals to guide JCT to a runners-up finish and was adjudged the NFL Player of the Year.

  1. That impressive season saw Chhetri win the AIFF player of the year award in 2007, a year in which he also helped the Indian national team win the Nehru Cup under Bob Houghton. It was his first honor with the national team.

  1. Being a footballer and a forward to boot, Sunil Chhetri was bound to score goals. In fact, he is the first Indian footballer to score 50 international goals while playing for the national side. It was during the 2018 World Cup Qualifying match, where he scored his 50th goal against Guam.

  1. Chhetri has won the prestigious, All India Football Federation (AIFF) Player of the Year four times in the year 2007, 2011, 2013 and 2014.

  1. Sunil Chettri holds the record for most number of goals at an international level. Since 2005, the Chhetri has scored 56 goals for the Indian national side.


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