‘I hope to keep playing and scoring in foreseeable future’: Chhetri after equalling Pele

‘I hope to keep playing and scoring in foreseeable future’: Chhetri after equalling Pele

Charismatic Indian football player Sunil Chhetri expressed hope that he will continue to play and score for the country in the near future after equaling Pele, one of the greatest players of the game in terms of number of goals scored at the international level. The 37-year-old Chhetri played a key role in India’s 1-0 win against Nepal in the SAIF Championship in the 83rd minute.

This is the team’s first win in three matches in the tournament to remain in the competition. This is Chhetri’s 77th international goal, which equaled Pele. The performance of the Indian football team has been declining for some time but it has not shown any effect on Chhetri’s game.

Chhetri told PTI after the match, “I keep getting asked about my consistency, I wish I had an answer. But the truth is I haven’t drawn any blueprint. It’s about giving my best every single day. It is about and I am thankful that there has been no shortage of it.”

Questions have been raised about Chhetri’s age but the Indian captain made it clear that he has not thought much about the future and will continue to play at the top level. Chhetri said, “Maybe you may find me lying but I have never thought about my future as a football player. I have said before that I like to wake up in the morning, practice and play. I am thoroughly enjoying it. I pick it up and never want to stop it.”

Chhetri, who has played 123 matches for India, said, “My future plans with football will really be like my next training session. I am fortunate to have a ‘support system’ around me which ensures that I don’t have to think or worry about anything that doesn’t involve football. It makes it easier for me to live my passion.”

With this goal, Chhetri is joint third with Ali Mabkhout of UAE among active football players. His more goals are in the name of Cristiano Ronaldo (112) and Lionel Messi (79). Despite countless achievements for himself and the team as a top-class striker at both the international and club levels, his hunger to do the best in the game remains.

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He said, “It is quite simple, if there is a trophy, I want to win it. There will be very few players who will be satisfied with the number of trophies they have, I am no different. On a personal level, I am a fan of statistics and achievements. Not a huge fan. But don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for everything I’ve achieved. For me though, winning for a team, whether it’s for a country or a club, is bigger than anything Not there.”


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