Sunil was short, and didn’t evoke thoughts that he could score: Subrata Bhattacharyya

As Sunil Chhetri completes 15 years in International Football on June 12, his first coach Subrata Bhattacharyya takes a trip down memory lane to sunils 1st trial with Mohun Bagan.

As Sunil Chhetri completes 15 years in International Football on June 12, we take a trip down memory lane to bring to you his first trial with Mohun Bagan. Here’s the then Bagan coach Subrata Bhattacharyya writing for the official website about his first impression of the ‘talismanic’ captain at Mohun Bagan’s trials.

It was a fateful morning some 17 years ago when I walked into the Mohun Bagan ground where a bunch of young players had gathered for club trials. It was a common feature as the club always wanted to Catch ‘em young. And from a distance when I looked at them, the gathered lot seemed no different from the so many trials that I had attended as a coach.

When you are assessing young footballers — perhaps once in a lifetime, a player would come along to lift your heart. I probably did not feel that way that morning. But what I did see were two teenagers who showed hints of promise, and loads of desire, and ambition. Those two kids were Sunil Chhetri and Subrata Paul.

With regards to Sunil, he did show traits that could make him a top striker. He had good pace, and his shooting was more than decent. What really struck me was the desire he showed. At first sight, from the perspective of a tall defender like myself, his diminutive figure did not evoke any thoughts that he would be able to get on the goal.

But he showed an excellent reading of the game. He constantly made runs off the ball, barking at his teammates to pass the ball to him. He was just five-foot-seven, but whenever there was a set-piece, he’d stick himself right into the towering defenders. That really showed the most important thing a coach looks for in a player – hunger.

There was one area, though, where he was lacking was his dribbling abilities. He was perhaps never really a great dribbler. However, football is not a sport where you sit and brood about your shortcomings. It is a dynamic game where you need to come up with solutions with regards to how to overcome those shortcomings. And over the years, Sunil has done it majestically.

To overcome his dribbling deficiencies, he worked extensively on his dodges, which has added the extra dimension to his game. It is this attitude towards the game that has helped him achieve this one step that perhaps became a leap in the long run.

Once he sets his mind on improving a certain aspect of his game, he would keep going at it till he mastered the craft. During the practice sessions later, he was always willing to put in that extra effort. On the field, he was the coach’s most obedient player. He loved challenges, and even as a teenager, we stayed willing to challenge the seasoned ones.

– Courtesy AIFF Media

Also Read: Once rejected by even 3rd division clubs in Kolkata, Sandesh Jhingan now relishes the pressure of captaincy

Also Read: AFC announces revised schedule for WC Qualifiers

For Trial related updates: Latest trials updates in Mumbai Football 

Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for all the latest happenings in the world of Indian football

Regal FC trials postponed to April

Mumbai based MDFA 3rd Division side Regal FC has postponed their upcoming trials to a new tentative date in April, amidst the Corona Virus outbreak Regal football Club had earlier announced…

Share

Mumbai Marines FC to hold trials for MDFA 1st Division

Newly promoted side Mumbai Marines FC are on the lookout for players for the upcoming season of the MDFA 1st Division, the club announced. After a successful MDFA 2nd Division…

Share

Regal FC to conduct trials for 3rd Division campaign

Mumbai based MDFA 3rd Division side Regal FC will be conducting a two day football trials for city footballers for their upcoming season Regal football Club has announced that they…

Share

GKW Rangers FC to conduct YPL U14 and 3rd Division trials

Mumbai based GKW Rangers FC will conduct trials for its MDFA 3rd division side as well as its U14 age group team that competes in MDFA Yuva Premier League U14….

Share

Rhino Sports Academy to conduct trials on March 15th

Mumbai based Rhino Sports Academy will be conducting trials for its upcoming seasons of MDFA 1st Division and MDFA 3rd Division Rhino Sports Academy will be fielding a side each…

Share

OSCAR SSE to conduct age group trials for its 2020-21 Season Elite Program

OSCAR SSE, a 2 star AIFF Accredited Academy, will be conducting age group trials (U13, U15 and U18 players) to induct in its Elite Program for 2020-21 season All the…

Share

Sterling FA to conduct 2nd round of trials for MDFA 1st division team

Mumbai First Division side Sterling Football Academy will be conducting their 2nd round of trials for their MDFA 1st Division campaign this Saturday 29nd Feb Sterling Football Academy will be…

Share

Sterling FA to conduct trials for MDFA 1st division team

Mumbai First Division side Sterling Football Academy will be conducting trials for their MDFA 1st Division campaign this Saturday 22nd Feb Sterling Football Academy will be fielding a team in…

Share

Ex-Servicemen Social Education and Sports foundation to conduct trials for MDFA 1st & 3rd Division reams

Ex-Servicemen social education and sports foundation will be conducting trials for their MDFA 1st Division & 3rd Division sides The first round of trials for MDFA club Ex-Servicemen social education and…

Share

MDFA to host trials for WIFA Inter District Men’s Open Football Championship

The Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA), the governing body for football in Mumbai district is set to host their coaching camps and selection trials for the WIFA Inter District Men’s…

Share