Top 10 goalkeepers with most clean-sheets for Indian football team

August 31 2023

These custodians went on to make vital contributions to the Indian football team.

Getting to represent the nation on the international stage is a moment of immense pride for any footballer. Only a few get to experience this feeling in their football careers. 

In terms of goalkeepers, India has seen some incredible players feature across the years. Custodians are very important pieces of the puzzle on a football field. They contribute immensely to a team’s success. No football team can hope to achieve greatness without a goalkeeper between the posts who exhibits calmness and provides stability. 

Thankfully, Indian football has seen figures who not only kept a lot of clean-sheets but represented the Blue Tigers for long periods of time. On that note, here are the top 10 with the most clean sheets for the Indian men’s team.

Brahmanand Shankwalkar – 5

Brahmanand Shankwalkar Indian Football Team most clean-sheets Arjuna Award
Brahmanand Shankwalkar. (Courtesy: Incredible Goa)

Brahmanand Shankwalkar is a former captain of the Indian men’s national team. He kept five clean-sheets for the Blue Tigers in 42 appearances. A household name in the Goan football community, the custodian remains one of India’s finest footballers.

C. Mustapha – 5

C. Mustapha also kept five clean-sheets for the Indian men’s national team during his playing days. However, he did it in a lesser number of games than Shankwalkar. The custodian did it in just 25 appearances.

Virendra Singh – 5

Virendra Singh also has five clean-sheets for the Indian men’s national football team. He recorded five shutouts in 21 outings for the Blue Tigers. The former FC Goa goalkeeping coach remains an avid observer of the national team even today.

Kuppuswami Sampath – 6

Kuppuswami Sampath passed away in March 2023. However, his legacy lives on. The custodian made six clean-sheets for the Indian national team and needed just 18 matches to reach the mark. He was part of the team that won bronze at the 1970 Asian Games.

Bhaskar Ganguly – 8

Indian Football Team most clean-sheets Bhaskar Ganguly
Bhaskar Ganguly. (Courtesy: The Hindu)

Bhaskar Ganguly is a former Indian football team captain and goalkeeper. The custodian kept eight clean-sheets for the Blue Tigers and is regarded as one of the finest players of his generation. He received the East Bengal FC Lifetime Achievement Award in 2019. 

Hemanta Dora – 9

Hemanta Dora was an exceptional goalkeeper in his time, notching up nine clean-sheets for the Blue Tigers in 27 games. He currently manages Peerless which plays in the CPD in Kolkata, West Bengal. He won the SAFF Championships with India in 1993 among other honours.

Atanu Bhattacharya – 10

Only four goalkeepers have 10 or more clean-sheets for the Indian men’s national team and Atanu Bhattacharya is one of them. The custodian from West Bengal played for India at the 1984 Asian Cup and many other major tournaments. 

Peter Thangaraj- 15

Peter Thangaraj Indian Football Team most clean-sheets
Peter Thangaraj. (Collected from Twitter X)

Peter Thangaraj kept 15 clean sheets for the Indian men’s national team in 55 games. This puts him as the third most successful goalkeeper in the history of the Blue Tigers in terms of the most clean-sheets kept. The custodian sadly passed away in 2008.

Subrata Paul – 18

Subrata Paul, one of the best goalkeepers of his generation, kept 18 clean-sheets for the Indian men’s national football team. With 67 appearances for the Blue Tigers, he has the most appearances in keepers’ terms for the national team. He won the 2015 SAFF Championships with India among other trophies and was called the ‘Spiderman of India‘ for his superhero skills.

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu – 25

Indian Football Team most clean-sheets Gurpreet Singh Sandhu
Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. (Courtesy: Khel Now)

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu holds the record for keeping the most number of clean-sheets while representing the Indian men’s national football team. He has 24 clean sheets for India and looks very likely to extend this record. The only Indian to play in the UEFA Europa League as of yet, Sandhu has won several trophies with India such as the SAFF Championships and the Intercontinental Cup. So far, he has donned the Indian jersey 66 times.

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