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"Sunil Chhetri will play club football for few more years," says former Indian footballer Subrata Bhattacharya

Published at :May 17, 2024 at 9:50 PM
Modified at :May 17, 2024 at 9:50 PM
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(Courtesy : ISL)

Bishal Deb

Chhetri plays for Bengaluru FC in the ISL

In an announcement that has sent ripples through the Indian football community, Sunil Chhetri, the talismanic striker and captain of the Indian national team, has declared his retirement from international football. The news shared through his social media channels, comes at a crucial time as India prepares to face Kuwait in a vital FIFA World Cup qualifier on 6 June. This match, part of the second round of qualifiers, will now serve as Chhetri’s swansong on the international stage, marking his final appearance in national colours.

Chhetri’s journey has been nothing short of inspirational, leading the national team with both skill and passion. His decision marks the close of a significant chapter in Indian football history. To gain deeper insight into this important decision, Khel Now reached out to Subrata Bhattacharya, a former India International who not only shares the field’s legacy but also has a personal connection with Sunil as his father-in-law.

Subrata Bhattacharya’s thoughts on Chhetri’s decision to retire after the Kuwait game

Sunil Chhetri has been the face of the nation’s sport for nearly two decades. His remarkable journey has seen him become the all-time top scorer for India and a beacon of inspiration for aspiring footballers. As he announces his retirement from international football, Subrata Bhattacharya, a stalwart of Indian football himself, shares his perspective to KhelNow:

“He has chosen what he believes is right for him, and that’s good. He’ll still play club football for a few more years. That’s okay. Everyone retires at some point, just like the greats Chunni Goswami and Tulsidas Balaram did. Right now, he’s only leaving international football, and that’s alright.”

Reflecting on Sunil Chhetri’s achievements in Indian Football

As the Indian football fraternity comes to terms with Sunil Chhetri’s retirement from international play, it’s a poignant time to reflect on his remarkable achievements. Subrata Bhattacharya, with his deep understanding of the game’s history, weighs in on Chhetri’s legacy:

“In Indian football, we cannot really say that we’ve achieved anything big recently. The last major achievement was winning the 1962 Asian Games. Since then, and especially in the last 30-40 years, there haven’t been any notable or big achievements. Despite this, Sunil Chhetri’s contributions have been significant in this period.”

Bhattacharya ranks Sunil among the Pantheon of Indian Football’s Greatest Strikers

When asked where he would rank Sunil Chhetri among the great strikers in the history of Indian football, he said, “Over the years, India had many legendary strikers like Parimal Dey and Tulsidas Balaram. Sunil Chhetri certainly belongs in the same category as these illustrious names.”

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